Volkswagen officially launched the long wheelbase version of its all-electric ID.Buzz van coming to the U.S. and Canada, June 2 in Huntington Beach, CA, a well-known surfing spot.
The electric van is inspired by the company’s minibus transporter---the Bulli or T1 Transporter---from the 1950s. Volkswagen vans were popular with surfers back in the day. Some might say the Volkswagen microbus is the precursor vehicle that inspired van life.
“The original T1 was introduced in late 1949/early 1950, and with the help of some memorable Volkswagen advertising was becoming popular all over the world. The T1 was produced for around 17 years, so there were plenty of used, more affordable models around for surfers to travel in, live in and, more importantly, transport their surfboards, either inside or on top,” explained Andrew Burgess from Revolution Campers.
For the North American market, Volkswagen increased the wheelbase of the ID.Buzz to 127.5 inches---9.9 inches longer than the European version--- providing room for a spacious third row for up to seven seats.
The German automaker believes the long wheelbase ID.Buzz is primed for the North American market. Meanwhile, in Europe, Volkswagen aims to keep customers on their toes by expanding the ID. Buzz’s “range of applications.”
The long wheelbase ID.Buzz has a new heat pump for increased efficiency in the winter. It also is available with a new 282 hp electric drive motor. The ID.Buzz coming to North America will have an 85 kWh battery pack.
As for features, Volkswagen equipped the ID.Buzz with a heads-up display, a next-gen infotainment system and remote parking with a smartphone. It also has a high-tech panoramic sunroof with smart glass, which can change from transparent to opaque via voice assistant or touch slider.
Volkswagen ID.Buzz vehicles bound for North America get a little extra love since they feature air-conditioned seats and an illuminated VW logo at the front. Volkswagen plans to start delivering the first ID.Buzz units in the U.S. by 2024.