If you were waiting for the full-fledged electric camper version of the Volkswagen ID.Buzz, you will have to wait a while longer. Although work is still being done, Volkswagen is not planning to release an ID.Buzz California anytime soon.
Volkswagen ID.Buzz California electric camper delayed
Although fully electric camper vans are possible, one won’t be available from VW commercial vehicles anytime soon.
Despite the high demand for an electric camper version of the ID.Buzz, Volkswagen says it would be too heavy. VW commercial vehicles confirmed to Edison media, with the same equipment as the current VW California, the all-electric camper would weigh at least three tons.
Because of this, the Volkswagen ID.Buzz California would be too heavy for those with a European category B driving license (up to 3.5 tons total weight), based on the payload.
Therefore, the upcoming VW California 6.1 will not be based on the ID.Buzz. It won’t even retain the name. Instead, it will be called the Multivan.
VW will unveil its “California Concept” at the Dusseldorf Caravan Salon, taking place from August 25 to September 3, 2023. The concept will be based on VW’s Multivan with a long wheelbase and hybrid drivetrain.
According to the report, the production version is planned to begin rolling out next summer at VW Commercial Vehicles in Hannover, Germany.
Volkswagen is not ruling out the possibility of an ID.Buzz California, but bringing it to market within this decade will be a challenge. The camper version would require new battery tech with increased energy density and range with lower costs, something VW will continue developing over the next several years.
Despite delaying the electric camper version, the ID.Buzz is already seeing high demand after launching last year.
After 2,279 ID.Buzz models were registered in the first half of the year, the number reached 536 in July. The growth was likely enough to tip the scale, pushing Volkswagen past Tesla in EV registration in Germany through July of this year.
As for the ID.Buzz California, other companies have proven an all-electric camper is possible, such as Winnebago, with others providing extension kits like Alpincamper or TC Conversion.
In addition, Mercedes-Benz released its VAN.EA platform in May, which will host its next-gen electric vans, including campers.
It can be done, but Volkswagen does not have the technology right now to make it practical. The German automaker has recently partnered with several outside companies to outsource EV tech, including XPeng and Hyundai Mobis.