[UPBEAT MUSIC PLAYING] LAUREN MCCRAY: It might seem like you've seen this film before, but trust me, you haven't. This is the all-electric VW ID.Buzz, and it's the global debut of the long wheelbase model we will get in the US. Today, we're going to tell you what's different, what we like, and what's left us scratching our heads.
Oh, hey, what's going on? We're also going to show you a few little surprises like this sliding window and an added third row, which is the main reason why we're here. Based on the power numbers from overseas models, we've been worried that the American buzz might be a little pokey. Fortunately, Volkswagen says the base rear drive model will have 282 horsepower, over 80 more than the European version. More importantly, it's got a healthy 406 pound-feet of torque. What's more, Volkswagen says the all-wheel drive Buzz will be offered with 330 horses, a huge increase. No torque figures for this dual-motor model yet, but it seems a lot more compelling.
Now, back to this little devil, the third row. So first of all, getting in and out is super easy. There's a lot of space. I will say, putting the seats back, though, is a bit tough. It takes a little bit of muscle. A bigger kid can handle it, but your little kids? That might be a bit difficult for them to actually push it back.
Once you get back here, though, it is pretty comfortable. You can easily fit two adults back here for a long period of time-- say, a nice little road trip. I'm not crazy about this headrest. It just feels a bit stiff. But you can recline it to help ease that.
The release is a bit awkwardly placed. It's like back there. The things that are placed really well, you've got a cup holder. You have a USB-C port so you can stay charged up. Air vents-- you do not have climate control, but you can control, at least, how much air you receive. And overall, you've got great headroom, great leg room. It's just-- it's a decent place to enjoy a nice little road trip.
All right, in the second row, again, great space. Legroom, headroom, you're sitting pretty comfortably. The seats hold me well, and an added bonus back here in the second row is you have the ability to have heated seats.
You also have USB-Cs that are conveniently placed right in the door so you can stay charged up, and climate control on both sides-- so super convenient on that end. A little surprise feature that I like is a cell phone pocket holder. That's kind of neat. And, of course, you have a pocket down here, and this little doodad-- a tray, which takes me back to like elementary, middle school. I just need my little carton of milk.
Unfortunately, this is a euro-only feature, so we will not have a tray in the US. One thing we will get is this optional variable opacity roof that can lighten or darken with the push of a button-- sweet! Sitting in the front is giving me all the feels and nostalgia from the old Bus. But obviously, there are some differences.
One of the main differences is the windshield. It's way far out there-- OK, not "way far," but it's definitely further, wider, and, in the old Bus, you were a bit closer. So it gives a bit more of an airy feel.
Another change, the infotainment system. Now, we do have the ID.4 as a long-termer. We've been vocal about not liking the tech there.
SPEAKER: The control system for the ID.4 is just bad, B-A-D, bad. There's no way around it.
LAUREN MCCRAY: Volkswagen has made some changes, and we can already see that now. The sliders here for your volume and climate control are illuminated, which is a plus. And also, your climate controls and heating and cooling for your seats are always on the screen, which is another added plus. So we're already liking what we're seeing from this update. Also, this has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and it's wireless.
When it comes to actually sitting in the seat, I feel comfortable. I like that both the passenger and the driver have these adjustable armrests. Sets you up for a nice road trip. And you've got your cupholders and your center console, which doesn't have a whole lot of space, but you can pull out this little cubby here. But look at that-- yeah, that's kind of a flaw. You have to have your cupholders in if you want to get to your stuff in your center console. You can move this baby on out and have easy access to the backseat. If you're a parent, that's going to be a plus if you need to get to the kids in a hurry.
One thing that's always been unique about VW Buses is that there's nothing else like it on the road. This is in that same vein. It's got the two-tone colors. There's a new added diamond grille in front, and then it's got that big, illuminated Volkswagen logo right up front. It's retro, and it's also modern all at the same time.
Now, one of the major questions we have had with this third-row model is, how much space do you actually have for your stuff, especially with all your seats occupied? And the way it's looking right now, while we don't have exact measurements, it is looking pretty tight.
You've got this two-tier storage. You can add on some space for your groceries. But if all your seats are occupied, it seems like you're going to maybe need a rack to fit everyone's stuff in it. Now, these seats do fold. So the third row folds down, and you can also remove this third row.
We also removed one of the seats. Now, they're compact and have a nice handle, but at 62 pounds each, they're definitely not light. And, of course, the optional tray and bins are removable, giving you a flat floor behind the second row.
Second row folds down flat as well. So if you want to put a nice air mattress in, go camping, sleep, you can do that. Driving range is still a mystery, too, but Volkswagen says we will get a bigger battery-- 91 kilowatt-hours versus the two-row's 82. Now, our three-row will be heavier, so despite the pack increase, we'll probably be lucky to get similar range to Euro models-- figure around 250 miles. And how about pricing? Well, Volkswagen isn't saying, but we're all parking around 55 grand to start. That may sound like a lot, but name another EV with three rows. Potential current rivals are all pricier SUVs like the Rivian R1S and VinFast VF9. And this Volkswagen has a much bigger third row.
[ENERGETIC MUSIC PLAYING]
A twist on a classic look. Listen, when I moved to California four years ago, I was certain I was going to be flower power dancing through the streets and laying beachside in my VW bus on PCH. And this is different in a lot of ways, but it's definitely kept some of those aspects of that bus we know and love.
So what have we learned today? Well, one, adding that third row adds a lot of utility and allows for real adults to get back there and sit comfortably. Now, what this doesn't have, as far as what we can see, is good cargo space. It's a bit tight.
So how will this do on the market? Well, we don't have pricing numbers yet, and it doesn't go on sale until next year. But with the nostalgia, the utility, and there's really nothing like it on the road right now-- or, really, ever-- we think out of the box, it's probably going to do pretty well. Now, be sure to like and subscribe to this channel for the scoop on all the latest EVs. And for even more on the ID.Buzz, visit edmunds.com