Volkswagen have released further details of its new ID. Buzz. Since its premiere at the Detroit Motor Show in January 2017, five intensive years of development work have followed. Now, the all-electric ID. Buzz is ready and Volkswagen will officially launch the zero-emissions five-seater ID. Buzz and Buzz Cargo van on March 9.
Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is currently going through the final phase of trials of the ID. Buzz prototypes. Right now, the pre-production fleet is touring Europe. These are final test runs under everyday conditions between Barcelona, Paris, London, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Hamburg and Hannover.
Kai Grünitz, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Head of Vehicle Development, said: “Before we start full production of the ID. Buzz, these final trials with vehicles practically matching the ultimate full-production specification provide us with indispensable input for the final fine-tuning.”
Both ID. Buzz versions draw on the stylistic elements of the legendary Volkswagen T1, the original Bulli. These elements include short vehicle body overhangs, maximum utilisation of space on a minimal footprint, the classic division of the vehicle body design into an upper and lower level. Plus the unmistakable face with its V-shape. Just like the original Bulli, the ID. Buzz also has rear-wheel-drive.
The ID. Buzz models will be built on Volkswagen’s Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB) electric platform. What we know now is the new ID. Buzz versions launching this year will both feature high-voltage lithium-ion batteries providing a gross energy content of 82kWh.
The battery supplies a 150kW electric motor, which is integrated into the rear axle, which it also drives, with the top speed electronically limited to 90mph (145kph). Official figures for the range are not yet available.
The new ID. Buzz models are agile vehicles with the electric motor building up its maximum torque of 310 Nm from a standing start. These dynamic components are joined by the vehicle body having a low centre of gravity because the battery is located in the sandwich floor. By virtue of its design, the ID. Buzz has the advantage of a turning circle of just over 11 metres.
During the coming year, the portfolio will be added to with a longer wheelbase model and a correspondingly broader range of possibilities in the interior.
Dimensions and Space
The launch versions of the ID. Buzz and ID. Buzz Cargo with the standard wheelbase (2,988mm) launching this year will be 4,712mm long. The bus, which is generously fitted with glass all round, is 1,937 mm high, while the van is 1,938 mm tall due to slight differences in the chassis. Both ID. Buzz vehicles are 1,985 mm wide (excluding wing mirrors).
Thanks to the space-saving MEB concept both models offer good utilisation of space. The five-seater ID. Buzz takes up to 1,121 litres of luggage even with all seats occupied. The maximum load capacity of the ID. Buzz Cargo, fitted with a partition wall, is over 3.9m3.
Clever charging solutions using the latest ID. software will offer the ‘Plug & Charge’ function as well. Using this function, the ID. Buzz authenticates itself at many providers’ (DC) quick-charging stations via the charging connector, exchanging all necessary data.
Another new feature will be bidirectional charging. This technology opens up a whole new spectrum of possibilities. For example, it will now be possible to store excess power from a home’s own solar panels in the ID. Buzz and to feed it back into the home in the evening in order to be independent even without the sun.
All ID. Buzz models will be able to receive software updates that can be downloaded over-the-air. These include both updates of the infotainment system and updates relating to charging or driver assist functions.
The spectrum of driver assist systems includes interconnected technologies such as the new ‘Trained Parking’ function for automatic manoeuvring into and out of parking spaces.
The ‘Car2X’ function provides warning and hazard alerts in the local vicinity and the latest version of ‘Travel Assist’, featuring utilisation of crowdsourced data, facilitates forward and lateral guidance on a partly automated basis across the full speed range.
Production of the ID. Buzz starts in the first half of this year and the European launch follows just a short time later in the autumn. The ID. Buzz is also set to be marketed in the USA shortly after.