Volkswagen has announced their iconic “magic bus” will be reintroduced to America, albeit with some 21st-century updates.
The ID Buzz (it’s officially stylized “ID. Buzz” but I’m not putting that stupid period in there) is electric and will be offered in RWD or AWD variants. It also features snazzy tech like a heads-up display, air-conditioned seats and the showstopper, a gigantic 16-square-foot electrochromic glass panoramic sunroof that can be turned from opaque to transparent by voice (or a touch slider).
The ID Buzz will hit U.S. dealerships next year, but specs are still light; there’s no word on range or even price, for instance. What we do know is that the U.S. market is getting a different, larger version than Europe’s short-wheelbase model. The stretched U.S. model you see in the photos has three rows, will seat seven and will reportedly feature a larger battery. (The short-wheelbase version will not be available in the U.S.; VW says “We believe most Americans will prefer the seating capacity, storage space and battery capacity made possible by the three-row version.”)
I will say the designers have done a great job capitalizing on the magic bus’ iconic looks while modernizing the aesthetic, and they’ve thankfully restrained themselves from veering into any over-the-top I’m-electric-and-I’m-crazy-look-at-me style moves. The design is clean, unmistakably VW and will undoubtedly become iconic in its own right over time.
The company thinks so too. “We honestly don’t think there are currently any competitors,” VW writes, with Teutonic bluntness.
At press time no hard release date had been announced.