At long last, Volkswagen has finally announced the all-electric version of their VW microbus — dubbed the VW ID. Buzz — is coming stateside. The seven-passenger bus resembles the iconic vehicle of the swinging sixties but features some modern tech and touches that plant it firmly in the future.
The VW Buzz has been riding along European roads since 2022. The American version, which will be available to purchase in 2024, will be 10-inches longer and have three rows instead of two (The Buzz is 194.4 inches long, which, per CNN Business, makes it 10 inches shorter than the Chrysler Pacifica). And it retains the look of the classic Microbus, with that two-tone paint job, boxy silhouette, and VW emblem on the hood.
The increased size of the Buzz equals a roomier interior. That translates to lots of leg room for passengers in the rear seats. Speaking of rear-seats, the Buzz comes with adjustable, fold-flat bench seats, but you can spring for second-row captain chairs if you so choose (doing that will drop seating capacity from seven to six). Tables fold out of the back of each front headrest for passengers in the rear seats to use. Up front, there’s an almost 13-inch main touchscreen console, 10-inch instrument cluster, and massage-tech in the driver and navigator seats.
Perhaps the dreamiest feature in the Buzz is the panoramic roof. Measuring 64.7 inches long by 40.8 inches wide, it stretches the length of the passenger area. The touch of a button turns it from opaque to transparent — and it can also transform on voice cue.
In terms of safety tech, some features include adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warnings, automated emergency braking, and forward-collision warning per Car & Driver.
Of course, it’s not all about looks. The Buzz is available in rear- and all-wheel-drive. The rear-drive model features an electric motor that can produce 282 horsepower and a top speed of 90 mph from a battery housed in the back. The all-wheel drive version offers two motors totaling up to 330 horsepower and a top speed of 99 mph. In that version, the motors are located in the front and back.
The price hasn’t been announced, but experts think the car will start at around $40,000. And if you’re worried about price gouging at the car dealership, VW Group of America CEO Pablo Di Si said that allowing car dealerships to apply markups to the ID. Buzz would be a big mistake, whatever that sticker price may be.
It’s also important to note that the Buzz will not qualify for the EV tax credits in the United States. The tax credit requires at least 50% of the components for EV batteries must be sourced in North America, and 40% of the critical minerals necessary for the construction of those batteries must be mined and refined in North America.
Since the ID. Buzz won’t be assembled in North America customers won’t be able to utilize the $7,500 tax credit for their vehicle purchase.
That being said, it looks like VW anticipates that the ID. Buzz could qualify for some form of an EV leasing tax benefit. “If you choose to lease, we anticipate that Volkswagen Credit will offer an EV Lease Bonus based on the federal tax credits available at the time of lease, though no final decisions have been made at this time.”
The ID. Buzz will go on sale in 2024 — and the first deliveries of the super groovy ride will hit in 2025.