VW to power up retro Kombi

Damien O’Carroll



Stuff NZ Newspapers



Volkswagen boss Herbert Diess has revealed on Twitter that the company will finally unveil the long-awaited ID. Buzz, an all-electric iteration of its iconic Type 2 ‘‘Kombi’’ in March. ‘‘The legend returns on 03/09/22!’’ Diess tweeted, along with a brief video of an ID. Buzz design sketch showing the retro-inspired lines that have been a throwback hallmark of the ID. Buzz since the company first revealed the concept version back in 2017. The styling of the ID. Buzz evokes the legendary Volkswagen Type 2, first launched in 1949. However, the vehicle is built around the latest technology on Volkswagen’s new all-electric MEB architecture that forms the basis of both the ID.3 hatch and ID.4 SUV. Volkswagen initially planned to have the ID. Buzz in production this year, but it has since been pushed back to 2023. The company plans to launch the van in the United States and Europe in two passenger versions: a high-end 275kW all-wheel-drive version with one motor on each axle and a 111kWh battery that will offer a range of more than 600km; and a less expensive rear-wheel-drive (RWD) version with an 83kWh battery. Europe will also get a stripped-out commercial version of the RWD van, and the people-mover versions will replace the venerable Touran in the German company’s lineup there. The commercial version of the ID. Buzz was spotted testing in Germany in the middle of last year sporting far more conventional looks. A closer inspection of the spy shots captured showed that the test mule was heavily camouflaged with fake body panels, suggesting a significant portion of the concept’s retro-inspired looks could well make it into production. Volkswagen has embarked on an ambitious push to dominate global EV sales and last month allocated €89 billion (NZ$149 billion) to EV and software development over the next five years. The company also says its MEB dedicated architecture will underpin a total of 27 battery-powered models across the VW, Skoda, Seat and Cupra brands by the end of this year.