Mon Aug 21, 2017 10:32AM
German automaker Volkswagen has announced that it plans to reincarnate an electric version of its Microbus, the iconic, bug-eyed "hippy bus".
German automaker Volkswagen has announced that it plans to reincarnate an electric version of its Microbus, the iconic, bug-eyed "hippy bus".

German automaker Volkswagen has announced that it plans to produce an electric version of its Microbus, the iconic, bug-eyed "hippie bus".

Volkswagen said in a press release that the new model – a production version of I.D. Buzz concept – would be available in the US, Europe and China from 2022.     

“Our goal is clear: we want to make the fully electric, fully connected car a bestseller around the world. The iconic car of the electric age must be a Volkswagen,” Dr. Herbert Diess, Chairman of the Board of Management for the Volkswagen brand said in the statement.

Unveiled earlier this year the Detroit Auto Show, the vehicle is a clear homage to Volkswagen's original Type 1 Microbus debuted in 1950 and was sold in North America until 1980. The original model had just 30 horsepower, but the new version has 369 horsepower from electric motors on each axle, according to Fortune.com.

A fast-charge battery system will enable it to restore about 80 percent of the energy capacity in 30 minutes at 150 kW.

The production version of the concept is expected to deviate little from the blunt-faced original, because all of the batteries will be mounted under the floor.

“The I.D. Buzz stands for the new Volkswagen,” Diess said in the press release.

Volkswagen is in the midst of a damaging emissions cheating scandal that has cost the German automaker some $25 billion to date, Fortune.com added.

The company’s announcement comes just days after federal prosecutors recommended a three-year prison sentence for a key engineer involved in the 2015 controversy.