An icon returns: With ID. Buzz and the ID. Buzz Cargo brings Volkswagen’s T1 DNA to the present – and the future. Like the first Bulli from 1950, the new models are clearly and functionally designed, while at the same time evoking a lot of emotions. But how did it happen? In a recent release from the manufacturer, Volkswagen designers provide insight into their work.
“T1 was an icon from the 1950s“, Says Jozef Kabaň, head of Volkswagen Design. “With ID. Buzz we transfer his DNA to the age of electric mobility. He successfully transfers the icon’s genes and stylistic elements to the digital age. The Buzz ID is timeless, sustainable and extremely functional – these features make it unique. He brings a lot of sympathy and closeness to people on the street. “
With ID. Buzz, Volkswagen enters a new market segment, thus accelerating its electric offensive in all vehicle classes as part of the ACCELERATE strategy. By 2030, at least 70 percent of Volkswagen sales in Europe will be pure electric cars, that’s more than a million vehicles. In North America and China, the e-car share should be at least 50 percent.
With their lines, ID. Buzz and the ID. Buzz Cargo – that is, the bus and the carrier – to their ancestors. “An icon has a lot to do with simplicity“, says Marco Antonio Pavone, Head of Exterior Design at Volkswagen.”Any child can draw a car like T1 with a few lines. And if I use the ID. Buzz, I can say: Wow, we did it perfectly here too. “
Even the front shows how strongly the two new models take up the old design DNA and should therefore trigger a smile in the viewer. The V-shaped hood and the large, prominent VW logo give the front a charismatic look – a light stripe connects the headlights. The separation of the design into an upper and a lower zone continues on the flank and back. It becomes particularly remarkable with the optional two-tone lacquer, yet another reminiscence of the historic T1.
The body of zero-emission Bulli wants to impress with its pragmatic proportions. The large wheels are on the outer corners – so the space on the compact base can be better utilized. The coefficient of resistance, which is particularly important for the efficiency of an electric car, is ID. buzz with 0.285; in the classic T1 it was 0.44.
The rims that come with their own design language and are also important for the vehicle’s efficiency – and thus range – are also of particular importance. “For an electric car, the wheels are actually very importantsays Ranbir Kalha, responsible designer for rims and wheels. “You have to meet a lot of technical requirements. The first point is of course the aerodynamics, the second is the weight. Especially with ID. Buzz we have some rims that look like one piece but are actually hybrid wheels – so they are two pieces so they are very light. This type of wheel is used on ID. Buzz used for the first time“, Kalha explains, adding:”In addition, the new wheels naturally shape the individual character of the ID. Buzz – from functional to sporty to elegant, depending on taste. “
Longest wheelbase in MEB
Bulli from 1950 – exact name: Type 2 T1 – had a self-supporting body with a length of 4.28 meters and a wheelbase of 2.40 meters that was specially developed for it. The Buzz ID and the ID. Buzz Cargo is just over 40 centimeters longer. They are based on the versatile modular electric drive matrix (MEB) from Volkswagen; its wheelbase of 2.99 meters is the longest in the MEB to date. Exterior designer Einar Castillo Aranda says: “With its compact drive components, the platform has allowed us to place the front wheels far ahead and put the driver in front and relatively high in the car. The result is a monolithic silhouette with a harmoniously integrated hood.“
Although ID. Buzz does not have an internal combustion engine, which often takes up a lot of space in conventional models, there is also a lot of technology in the front area, from heating and air conditioning systems to the electric brake booster. This required intensive coordination work. “In the area where the headlight is located, the installation space is very cramped. We discussed a lot with our colleagues from Technical Development to be able to keep body volume close to the wheel. Here, too, the desire to be able to preserve the monolithic silhouette was paramountAranda explains.
Keyword headlights: Like all ID. models, ID. Buzz all about LEDs, IQ.LIGHT is available upon request. Its LED matrix headlights have a strong influence on the car’s identity, as Urs Rahmel, Head of Light and Rim Design, says: “It was important for us to bring a certain human character into the car with light animations. Therefore, ID. Buzz intelligent with its surroundings“Rahmel’s colleague Sandra Sturmat explains:”As a member of ID. The family also begins with ID. Buzz a welcome scenario when the driver approaches the ID. Buzz is approaching. It looks as if the car is opening its eyes, as if it is looking for eye contact. We believe that this interaction sets the emotional spark.“
Interior with calm lines. Designed by ID. Buzz and the ID. Buzz Cargo follows the genetics of the classic T1 in its clarity – in its very own, contemporary way. In the interior, for example, this philosophy should be evident in the – as in T1 – linear instrument panel with its calm, stacked elements. This includes: the smart operating concept with multifunction steering wheel and the two digital displays.
Thanks to the compact electric drive and the battery integrated in the floor of the vehicle, the “open space” was created and thus a space concept with a large amount of space that can focus even more on people and their needs. It offers plenty of space for driver and passengers as well as numerous storage spaces and interfaces, and the feeling of space is generous, airy and light. Jozef Kabaň says: “We have developed a vehicle layout with a very logical and intuitive interior concept and a variable space utilization. ” The front seats in ID. Buzz is – typically Bulli – located relatively high and equipped with armrests. The top version of the seats with the largest adjustment options was recognized by the Campaign for Healthier Backs (AGR) for its ergonomics.
The interior of ID. Buzz must convey a high-quality, chic and at the same time homely impression – like a modern lounge. Tomasz Bachorski, Head of Interior Design at Volkswagen, explains: “Our goal was to bring our customers’ homes into the interior of the vehicle. And with all the facets – from the materials to the digital equipment that you are used to from there. ” Great emphasis was therefore placed on the interplay between function, colors and materials. In the optional “style“interior packages correspond to the colors of the exterior paint and the cool tone”electric white“Set accents. A particularly loving detail can be found in the side and seat panels of the five-seater – there are stylized silhouettes of ID. Buzz printed. A ten-color ambient lighting is standard, a variant with thirty colors is optional.
Design and function must harmonize perfectly in every detail, as Doreen Langner from CAD Interior Design explains using the example of ambient lighting. “We use the design data on the computer to check what the light looks like in the car. And when it is reflected in the windshield, we must adjust the design of the instrument panel so that it is swallowed and does not bother the customer. “
When selecting materials in ID. Sustainability played an important role for Buzz. The interior is completely leather-free. For some covers, there will be a fabric whose threads are made from recycled PET bottles and plastic pulled up from the sea. Marion Dürr, Color & Trim designer, continues the idea of sustainability: “We have created good combinations of valuable materials. We used chrome paint instead of chrome and a wood look instead of real wood. “
Source: Volkswagen – press release from 13/05/2022