Van and Commercial Vehicle Awards 2024: Best Van-based MPV
The Volkswagen ID Buzz mixes a long range and a practical interior with lots of tech and even the promise of low running costs...
Volkswagen ID Buzz
Priced from £59,035 (incl. VAT and OTR) Range 258 miles C02 emissions 0g/km Power 201bhp Battery 77kWh Torque 228lb ft
You might not expect the van-based MPV category to be one you’d turn to in the pursuit of cars which would turn your heads as they drive past. These days, however, it’s spearheaded by what is arguably one of the coolest vehicles around – the Volkswagen ID Buzz.
Why does it earn that status? Well, because it captures the zeitgeist of the time perfectly. Its styling is a modern reimagining of the iconic Type 2 Volkswagen Camper of the 1950s, which instantly makes it feel like something a bit special.
Yet despite its retro design cues, the ID Buzz is thoroughly forward-thinking. It’s electric for a start, which is about as fashionable as it gets right now, and it also manages to post some very compelling numbers in that area. Sure, the 258-mile official range achievable from a full charge of the 77kWh battery can’t match the figures for the longest-legged electric cars from the likes of Tesla and Mercedes, but compared with other electric van-based MPVs such as the Citroen e-Berlingo and Mercedes EQV, it has them well and truly beaten.
Another area where the ID Buzz has an inherent edge over its van-based rivals is what sits underneath it. Despite the fact that the MPV version does indeed share its underpinnings with the commercial vehicle version, aptly named the ID Buzz Cargo, the term 'van-based MPV’ is something of a misnomer for the ID Buzz, because those underpinnings actually come from Volkswagen’s range of passenger cars.
That makes the ID Buzz considerably more polished to drive than its van-based rivals. Indeed, it blends an impressively comfortable ride with surprisingly stable handling given its size and shape, and although it possesses all the aerodynamic slipperiness of a block of flats, it suppresses wind noise just as well as it does other exterior noises, making it an effortlessly peaceful and serene way to get around. The perky performance you get from its 201bhp rear-mounted electric motor is appealing, too.
And that’s before we’ve got to the ID Buzz’s real strength, one that any good MPV needs, and that’s its incredibly spacious and practical interior, which also happens to have all the character and quality as the rest of the car – plus, it’ll only get more family friendly once the seven-seater version goes on sale. Yes, it’s expensive, but our reigning 2023 Car of the Year feels worth every penny.
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