Fans of the iconic Volkswagen bus have been being teased with a modern replacement for two decades, and with the electric I.D. Buzz concept headed to showrooms in 2020, it looks like they’ll finally get their wish. And if the Christmas card the company sent out is any indication, it looks like even more cool retro-themed product is on the way — possibly including a new version of the beach buggy.
The tech that will be behind all the retro designs is Volkswagen’s Modular Electric Drive Matrix platform, which is designed to be flexible enough to support a variety of different platforms, from the I.D. Vizzon sedan, to the I.D. Crozz crossover, to a — cross your fingers — beach buggy like the one pictured here. All the new vehicles will be part of the company’s E-mobility Product Line.
The layout will be a “skateboard” design, where the battery is positioned under the passenger compartment, which will both maximize storage space, and provide a low center of gravity which will aid handling. Here’s what Christian Senger, the head of E-mobility Product Line had to say about the next-generation architecture:
The ID. will be a milestone in technological development. It will be the first fully connected electric car with full everyday utility that millions of people will be able to afford. The car holds the road really well thanks to the flat battery in the floorpan and the space inside is much more generous – we are making substantial headway with the sense of spaciousness.
Now, in regards to the potential for a beach buggy, it’s interesting to note that Volkswagen wouldn’t be taking a cue from past product, but rather how the aftermarket adapted the classic Beetle chassis to a variety of applications. Back in the ’70s, the Baja Bug was a popular choice for folks looking to tear up the desert, while kits like the Mk1 Nova and the Cody Coyote — made famous on the Hardcastle and McCormick television series — gave the humble “People’s Car” the looks of a high-end exotic. It was one heck of a modular platform.
Whether of not we’ll see a factory beach buggy at your local AutoNation Volkswagen dealership is anyone’s guess. But given that Volkswagen is looking to put a whopping 15 million electric cars on the road in the coming years, we’re sure to see plenty of interesting product in showrooms. So if you’re looking for an electric car? Keep your eye on VW…