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Volkswagen developing electric ID beach buggy

Autocar 2018-12-06 00:00:00
  • The ID Buzz concept has been confirmed for production. It demonstrates Volkswagen's retro-inspired design
  • The ID hatchback will be a more modern design when it arrives next year
  • The beach buggy is one of three retro-inspired concepts currently being worked on at Volkswagen

Volkswagen is set to resurrect the classic Meyers Manx beach buggy as a modern-day electric car featuring key elements of its new MEB (modular electric architecture) platform as well as the electric driveline destined to power next year’s ID hatchback.

The new two-seater, currently under construction at Volkswagen’s Braunschweig-based R&D centre in Germany, is described as a modern interpretation of the original rear-engined, Beetle-based Manx buggy. It's an open-top design featuring a low-set body, a free-standing windscreen, a sturdy roll-over bar and large wheels.


While shrouded in secrecy, the new electric buggy is said to be under “active consideration” as a possible addition to Volkswagen’s upcoming line-up of zero-emissions ID models. The first of these, a production version of the earlier ID hatchback concept, is planned to be unveiled during the third quarter of 2019.

A Volkswagen source has revealed to Autocar that the new beach buggy is among three retro-themed ID models masterminded by Volkswagen chairman Herbert Diess. It is planned to complement the Microbus-inspired Buzz van and a secret new five-door hatchback model described as a recreation of the Beetle.

Current plans call the new Volkswagen buggy to be unveiled at the 2019 Geneva motor show.

The original Manx was designed for desert racing by Californian Bruce Meyers. It was produced between 1964 and 1971 in the form of a kit car based around the shortened chassis of the Beetle. 

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