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CAR OF THE WEEK: Not flash but a thoroughly satisfying Buzz

May 17th, 2024 8:00 PM

CAR OF THE WEEK: Not flash but a thoroughly satisfying Buzz Image

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WHEN I first had a Volkswagen ID. Buzz to drive, soon after its launch here, it was a lemon-yellow colour that certainly attracted attention.

A little too garish for my taste, even though it did bring people knocking on the window to talk about the flashback machine to the flower power decade of the 1960s.

Of course, the ID. Buzz has much more to it than the hints of retro, which in fact are quite minimal in a general shape for the Transporter series vans that have been produced very successfully by the brand over seven generations of the nameplate.


The ID suffix is the tell-tale that the Buzz is all-electric.

I like the shape. And in the review version’s slightly off-white, I think it looks quite elegant.

The squareness, of course, is very practical in terms of fitting people and stuff, but the little style details add enough character to stop it looking like a mere box on four wheels.

The front end elements of bright ‘eyes’ lights are nicely linked with a nice-sized traditional VW badge, and the lower apron mesh merges well while also being distinctive.

The interior also pleased me more this time, the blue tints and trims showing a cooler treatment, in every meaning, against that lemon-yellow of the earlier version.


There’s still a 60s tilt along the dash to the faux-wood popular at that time, but otherwise the sense is modern, airy, and with room to breath, stretch, and generally feel in a good space.

The driver instrumentation is that very simple and clear digital we’re used to from all-electric Volkswagens, and there’s a large central infotainment screen set above semi-manual strokey controls for climate and volume.

Nobody is fond of those, but we’re stuck with them in the brand for the time being.

The ID. Buzz is essentially a five-seat car with an enormous boot, and the seats for all are comfortable, with good room for those in the back.


The front seats are especially supportive, and there are drop-down armrests for those who like them.

The review top-of-the range version had electric seat adjustment with memory for both driver and passenger.

The height of the car makes it pleasant for travelling around the country, because you can see so much more over the ditches than even from a mid-sized SUV.

Access to the rear seats is really easy, thanks to the electrically-operated sliding doors on each side.

That big boot I mentioned — 1,121 litres of capacity — had a double decker fitment in the review vehicle so stuff can be hidden in the lower space.

I found the drive experience particularly good.

The low centre of gravity from having the traction battery under the floor transforms what would otherwise be van handling.

Over a mix of very good roads and some quite indifferent botharíns, the consistent torque and silent motor and being the SWB version of the car all helped make it a really easy to be swift on the straights or meander on the byways.

And the Buzz has the same turning circle as a Golf, so it’s very manoeuvrable.

Of 16 cars I have reviewed so far this year, nine have been all-electric, and I’m very much tuned in to the pleasant driving such powertrains enable.

The battery with a useable 77kWh has a claimed range of up to 424km, though experience over my time was the car was a fairly consistent 385km, which I consider reasonable.

The Buzz is not flash, not sexy-looking, oh, and not cheap. But the more you drive it, the more satisfying it proves to be.

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