Fun revival: Electric dune buggy could join VW I.D. line


2018 VW Beach Buggy Christmas card concept

2018 VW Beach Buggy Christmas card concept

Update: As if to confirm rumors that it is considering building a new electric beach buggy, Volkswagen included the sketch in this lead photo on its corporate Christmas card, sent to various journalists and others who have a relationship with the company.

Autocar magazine reports that the concept is under "active consideration" at VW as one of a trio of retro-themed models on the company's new electric MEB platform. The others are the 2022 VW ID Buzz, and a new five-door hatchback in the form of the original Beetle. (No, we're not sure how that works, either.) The company is reportedly constructing a prototype at its Braunschweig, Germany research and development center.

What's old is new, and what's new is old.

As if a Volkswagen revival of the classic Microbus—complete with a cargo-van version—weren't enough, the company revealed to British Autocar magazine that one of the next models in its upcoming electric I.D. lineup may be a revival of the off-road Meyers Manx dune buggy.

DON'T MISS: Will Volkswagen's electric Microbus be made in the USA?

VW never built the Manx. The iconic, fiberglass-bodied dune buggies, first built in 1964, were kit-car conversions designed to fit on classic 1960s rear-engine VW Beetle floor pans—complete with VW engines hanging out the back, frequently with "stinger" tail pipes pointing proudly to the sky. (Meyers still builds some updated versions of the buggy kits.)

Meyers Manx Dune Buggy

Meyers Manx Dune Buggy

Volkswagen's official version will be electric, based on its new MEB modular electric-car platform. The company has said other models based on the architecture will have up to 340 miles of range and will be able to charge at 125 kilowatts.

READ THIS: VW plans 27 electric cars by 2022 on new platform

Such a minimalist design may need fewer batteries to accomplish the same mission—and without waving a pollution finger at the sky. Two electric motors are expected to give it all-wheel drive and an estimated 369 horsepower.

Volkswagen ID Buzz Concept

Volkswagen ID Buzz Concept

The electric Manx-style buggy could follow five or six other all-electric vehicles, ranging from an urban hatchback to a flagship sedan and long crossover—and that much-anticipated I.D. Buzz Microbus redux.

VW has also hinted it is working on retro-themed electric version of the classic Beetle after that. In all, the company says it will base 27 models on the new architecture to build 10 million new electric cars.

 
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