A free driving spirit, with the wind in your hair and the ability to adventure to destinations less frequented than most is a scene best embodied by the original Volkswagen beach buggy. A vehicle loved by owners and onlookers alike. Capable of being modified and customised to individual tastes, it offered something spectacularly different during an otherwise conservative automotive era. Approximately 250 000 were built until production was halted in the middle of the 1980s.
The folks over at Volkswagen have plans to revive the legend, but with a modern-day twist. The one-of-a-kind electric-powered Volkswagen buggy has made its debut at the VW stand at the Geneva motor show and it demonstrates many key styling cues of the original, with no fixed roof, no conventional doors, open side sills and larger off-road wheels and tyres.
The concept is based on the modular electric drive matrix (MEB) platform as an exercise to demonstrate how multifaceted the new platform is. The MEB platform underpins the likes of the I.D Buzz the Kombi-like electric concept we saw last year and the I.D Vizzion. Going forward there could be an all-electric Arteon-like concept, too.
In doing this, VW is at pains to demonstrate the MEB platform can be used for both large-scale production models as well as low-volume niche vehicles, much like the Beetle chassis was in the past. The uniform and relatively compact nature of an electric drivetrain can be credited for this, thanks to the lack of bulky components such as fuel lines and an exhaust system. There could even be the opportunity of fitting bespoke aftermarket body styles for these modular EVs.
‘A buggy is more than a car. It is vibrancy and energy on four wheels. These attributes are embodied by the new e-buggy, which demonstrates how a modern, interpretation of a classic can look,’ says Klaus Bischoff head designer at Volkswagen. For us petrolheads, this is great news knowing that an automotive giant like Volkswagen has plans of an EV future spiced-up with fun-filled options.