Volkswagen loves to tease flower children with a regular stream of retro-fueled renderings that harken back to the iconic Type 2. Whether you like to call it the Transporter, Kombi, Microbus, or simply bus, it’s an icon in the classic car scene. Volkswagen has never missed an opportunity to get press from renderings and the possibility of bringing the shape back to production. Is this time for real though?
Photo- Volkswagen of America
The forward-control layout of the Type 2 lends itself to lots of interior cargo space, which VW took to heart in the latest design exercise for the I.D. Buzz concept. The new design is an imagining of the EV bus as a trade or work van, and VW says this iteration could be launched as early as 2021. Previously VW noted that the I.D. Buzz-inspired EV bus would hit markets in 2022, following the launch of the Golf-like I.D. electric hatchback that’s slated to arrive in 2019.
But will it happen for real? We have seen fancy drawings before, this is not even the first time they teased the idea of making it electric. VW’s only current (pun intended) electric offering, the e-Golf, appears to have a much more aerodynamic profile and only manages 125 miles per charge. The forward control layout will certainly struggle with crash ratings, making it a tough sell in an ever-safety-conscious automotive market.
VW has our attention though—the numbers have potential to be add up to something special. With the largest battery, VW claims 340 miles of range, aided by a large solar roof that can stretch range by up to 9.3 miles. High levels of autonomous driving features allow the “driver” to work on a laptop just to the right of the steering wheel. A fold-out workbench slated for this latest tradesman oriented iteration combine with 230V electrical sockets to allow use of large tools without the need for a noisy generator at the worksite.
It looks and sounds great, but from the looks of it VW has some serious hurdles ahead of them to hit its own timeline. We have our guess, but we want to hear if you think there will be one in your local VW dealer come 2022. Is the electric VW van etched in stone or total vaporware?