Electric Volkswagen Microbus Successor Confirmed – The Drive
Volkswagen fans, rejoice. During the reveal of the new Volkswagen Polo compact, VW head Herbert Diess confirmed that the automaker will build a new Microbus, and this time, it will be electric, according to Auto Express.
“Emotional cars are very important for the brand. We are selling loads of Beetles still, particularly in US markets. But we will also have the Microbus that we showed, which we have recently decided we will build,” Diess said. The Microbus he’s referring to is likely the electric I.D. Buzz concept we saw at the Detroit Auto Show.
This is very exciting news for several categories of car enthusiasts. There are the folks who have been dying to buy a modern version of the classic VW Microbus, but have only been teased with concept after concept without anything similar available in dealerships.
EV enthusiasts will be happy to see a new category of vehicle being electrified. This new Microbus could very well be the first mass-produced electric van on the market (we’re not counting the Tesla Model X as the same category).
Finally, anyone who is tired of seeing crossovers everywhere should be pleased that more practical vans are coming back, even if it’s in a small way. An EV platform lends itself well to a Microbus design because you don’t need to put an engine in the front. You can have the traditionally flat nose and boxy shape with the components powering the car hidden throughout. VW design boss Oliver Stefani even took a shot at crossovers when he told Auto Express at the Geneva Motor Show “Honestly, nobody goes into the woods with an SUV.”
Diess’ statement echoes something else Stefani told Auto Express during the Geneva show regarding the I.D. Buzz concept, “We would like to bring this back because it fits so well to what the brand stands for: it’s emotional, it has functionality, it makes your life easier.”
An appeal to emotion is a new theme for Volkswagen. The automaker is blending nostalgia with modern car tech in an effort to improve both its global image and their bottom line. If the new Microbus stays true to the original design and has the right marketing and price tag, it could be a significant step for VW in digging itself out of the Dieselgate hole.