VW brings back the Bus with the I.D. Buzz concept [NAIAS]

Autodesk VRED Professional 2017 SP1

Volkswagen is serious about the EV game, and the new I.D. BUZZ concept is further proof.

Making its global debut at the 2017 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, the I.D. BUZZ is a reboot of the classic Microbus, but for the next generation of electric vehicles.

Built on the company’s Modular Electric Drive Kit, also know as MEB, the BUZZ has two engines, front and rear, that produce a combined 369 horsepower in an all-wheel-drive configuration.

Autodesk VRED Professional 2017 SP1

Range of the BUZZ, an important number to combat range anxiety, is a stout 270 miles, roughly the same as a gasoline-powered vehicle. Fueling the BUZZ – no pun intended – is a 111 kWh battery that can charge to 80 percent capacity in 30 minutes using what Volkswagen calls the Combined Charging System, or it can also be charged with household outlets or at charging stations.

VW claims a 5-second 0-60 time and a limited top speed of 99 mph.

Not that performance is going to be top priority for those buying the I.D. BUZZ. The new Bus’ game is connectivity, along with a fully autonomous mode called I.D. Pilot. In this mode, the steering wheel retracts into the dash and the front seats can be spun around, turning the inside of the BUZZ into a social gathering place.

Speaking of inside the BUZZ, since the platform is designed as an electric-first platform, interior space is abundant. The rear luggage compartment can hold from 23.3 to 162.5 cubic feet of cargo.

Some of the other party tricks of the BUZZ include the ability to communicate with its surroundings. The LED “eyes” in front actually mimic human eyes. For example, when the car is parked, the lights are arranged to make the car look like it’s sleeping.

While production of the BUZZ – whose name is actually a derivative of Bus – is unknown, Volkswagen does intend to bring a plethora of electron-powered vehicles to market by 2020, with a goal of a million sold by 2025.

TFLcar will be at the Detroit show covering as much as we can. Check back for more updates.

And check out this TFLcar video of the Volkswagen BUDD-e concept, the first Bus-like EV that debut at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show: