Volkswagen Beetle Goes Electric

VW Electric BeetleThe iconic VW Beetle is getting an overhaul. Autocar reports that the brand is considering an all-electric model which will also call back to the Beetle’s roots as a rear-wheel drive vehicle. Like the Beetles of the past, which featured a rear engine in its trunk and rear wheel drive, this new electric Beetle would feature a rear-located powertrain as well as rear wheel drive.

This would compliment the new Volkswagen Microbus that the company previewed at the Detroit Auto Show this year. The bus was a concept vehicle based on the ID Buzz Concept. It promises to feature configurable seating, interactive connectivity, and a small footprint. Not only will the all-electric vehicle offer a 270 mile driving range, but Level 3 driving autonomy as well.

VW seems to currently be undergoing a huge push for electric vehicles, and they’re teasing a new “emotional” approach in their concept designs. Chairman Herbert Diess previously hinted at the prospect of both an all-electric Beetle and an electric Volkswagen Thing, an iconic model which previously appeared in the US for only 2 years. Both of these vehicles would utilize the brand’s MEB platform, which would allow for a refresh of several iconic vehicles simultaneously. However, he stressed that the VW all-electric Beetle has yet to be confirmed. The brand is awaiting a board vote on its electric car range before it moves forward.

“We have a good chance on the electric side. You can do derivatives efficiently. We have a very flexible platform. We can do nice things: rear-wheel drive, front-wheel drive, all-wheel drive,” he said.

Diess said that the MEB platform will support the redesign of 15 cars onto an electric platform simultaneously, with five of them slated to be part of the Volkswagen brand. The ID hatchback and the ID Crozz Concept have already been promised for the European market.