The debate of whether people would prefer a modern EV-powered VW Type 2 Bus over the new I.D. Buzz can be endless, especially for those nostalgic about the classic model. However, Volkswagen did not intend to start this discussion. Instead, the company wanted to commemorate the 20th anniversary of its former Electronics Research Laboratory (ERL), now known as Innovation and Engineering Center California (IECC), by converting a Type 2 Bus into an electric concept called Type 20.
The Type 20 features a unique design with a cool paint job and orange wheels, created using Volkswagen’s “generative design” approach. The design features aerial roots that serve the functional purpose of creating strong structures while keeping the weight low. Under the hood, Type 20 boasts an electric motor generating 120 horsepower and 173 lb-ft of torque, powered by a 10 kWh battery pack. Although the Type 20’s range is unknown, it is likely enough for short demonstrations and press events.
The Type 20’s custom pneumatic suspension system, developed with Porsche, adjusts the concept’s height via software. VW claims it can rise when the driver approaches, likely to improve stability at high speeds and make entry and exit more comfortable. The Type 20 also includes biometric identification through facial recognition, a holographic infotainment system, and conversational digital assistants, all showcasing the latest cutting-edge technology, similar to that which helped VW’s “Stanley” become the first robotic car to finish the DARPA Grand Challenge in 2005.
While the Type 20 will primarily be displayed at the IECC in Silicon Valley, California, we can expect to see it at major auto shows, particularly those held in the United States.