Volkswagen’s I.D. Buzz concept that debuted earlier this year in Detroit was a 21st Century take on the classic Microbus, and ever since its introduction VW has strongly hinted that it wanted to build it. Now, the automaker has officially announced its plans to put the all-electric people-mover into production.
The announcement was made in Monterey, California, ahead of the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. The production electric van will hit dealerships in 2022, following the launch of the compact four-door electric I.D. in 2020. VW said North America, China, and Europe will be the production I.D. Buzz’s target markets.
“After the presentations at the global motor shows in Detroit and Geneva, we received a large number of letters and emails from customers who said, ‘please build this car,’” said Volkswagen CEO Dr. Herbert Diess, in a release.
The production vehicle won’t stray far from the concept, according to Volkswagen. The EV-specific MEB platform will house the batteries and electric motors in the floor, allowing for a spacious cabin. The platform will also allow the production bus to keep its body shape that pays tribute to the iconic 1960s original.
But it won’t all be surfing and flower power for the production I.D. Buzz. Volkswagen also announced that it will build a cargo version for its commercial division. I.D. Buzz Cargo model will be configured to haul goods and will be intended for use in the city. Many cities in Europe and elsewhere are planning to ban diesel vehicles next decade, so launching an electric cargo van to replace VW’s current diesel Transporter makes sense. Volkswagen says the I.D. Buzz will be available with Level 3 autonomous capability. As we previously reported, VW is targeting 2025 to launch full autonomous capability across the I.D. lineup.