Volkswagen ID. Buzz, new take on iconic VW bus, among company's new electric offerings in 2024

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Monday, March 18, 2024
Electric VW bus is among company's new offerings in 2024
The Volkswagen ID. Buzz will finally be released to showrooms late in 2024. The VW ID. Buzz is the company's new take on the iconic VW Bus.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Volkswagen of America is marking its 75-year anniversary in 2024 with things like a catchy ad campaign showing its humble roots, with a simulated flashback to 1949, and the first Beetles coming into New York Harbor.

But this year also marks VW heading further into the future, a future of more electric vehicles.

"Volkswagen is fully committed to EVs. We're investing heavily in them today," said Rachel Whitwell, company spokesperson.

As of right now, there's only one electric Volkswagen model, the rather successful ID.4 with a starting price of $41,160. It still looks essentially the same as it did when it debuted three years ago, but has gotten some upgrades this year.

"Improved horsepower, improved acceleration, and also probably most importantly, improved range," noted Whitwell.

That range is now up to 291 miles, depending on version, compared to a prior max range of 275, per EPA estimates.

And by year's end, Volkswagen will triple its electric offerings, from just one, to three. Next up will be the ID.7, a sleek coupe-like sedan. This should broaden VW's battery-powered appeal to those who don't want an SUV.

Then, the one that's been teased for so long - the ID.Buzz will finally hit showrooms late in 2024 after generating so much excitement far and wide, as it's a modern take on the iconic VW Bus. It was featured in that 75th anniversary spot that debuted during the Super Bowl. Dealers are apparently being inundated with inquiries about it.

But the ID.4 should remain the top seller of VW's electric vehicle line, as it's in that popular compact crossover SUV category that attracts so many buyers.

One way a lot of people are still wary of EVs is the thought of taking one on a road trip and having to count on public charging. Volkswagen's engineers have come up with some technology to help in that regard.

Namely, an upgraded infotainment system that includes software called IQ.DRIVE to help you with those road trips. It's a smart navigation app that communicates with the grid and the car's battery.

"It gives you insight as to where the chargers are, how many chargers are available at that particular charging station, and also good insight into how long it'll take you to charge," Whitwell said.

Yes, 1949 was a long time ago, but the past is the past, even though it should be celebrated. And when it comes to transportation, the future is the future. People looking forward to a lot of choices in battery-powered vehicles are likely celebrating that future as well.

MORE: VW's new electric ID. BUZZ marks a return of the iconic bus

The classic VW bus, an icon of California's 1960s surf culture, has been retooled for the electric age.

Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly spelled Whitwell's name.