A funky VW Buzz

Our grandchildren were visiting from Denmark recently and knowing a few weeks back that they were on their way, I had booked the seven-seater VW Multi Van. However, there was a slight technical problem with the Multi Van and VW gave me their five-seater electric I.D. Buzz instead.

I’m not a huge fan of electric cars, but I was probably more disappointed that it was a five-seater, as a seven-seater was what I needed for the grandchildren. However, we managed even if it meant taking two cars on various tourist trails instead of one.

The I.D. Buzz was voted Continental Irish Car of the Year for 2023, but I hadn’t driven the car or mini bus for almost a year. Truth be told up to now we haven’t see many of them on Irish roads.

Graeme Lennox, Head of Group Communications with VW in Liffey Valley, Dublin explained that there were ‘availability problems’ with the Buzz earlier this year, but he added that VW now has attractive finance deals which means we should soon see more of the funky looking car/mini bus on our roads.

I think funky is the word that best describes the I.D. Buzz and the yellow and white colours of my test car certainly added to that funky look. The yellow colour is used throughout the interior making for a very bright décor. 

When you sit in the views of the road ahead and your surroundings are really brilliant. I think it should make for safer driving and no driver is ever going to say that they didn’t see you as the car is so bright.

The I.D. Buzz is 4.7 metres in length, which means you need to be careful when driving. But it’s very easy car to manoeuvre and there is an excellent reversing camera. At the front it really has that retro look of the VW K2 mini bus from the sixties and the classy-looking alloys certainly added to the overall appeal. It has been described as the most head-turning car that VW has ever built.

The grandchildren loved it, the colour, the interior space and the two sliding rear doors in the top of the range Max version. I was going to say they also liked the mini trays on the back of the front seats, which can be used to hold a laptop. But I don’t think the trays were ever used; you only need a hand to hold a mobile phone.

We are told that that a seven-seater version will be available next year. I reckon that the seven-seater is unlikely to have as much luggage space as the current five-seater version, but it will have a better battery. There are two levels in the massive boot and the top one can take five bulky cases and you can squeeze in a few carry-on cases and bags underneath. Prices for the five-seater start at €69,770 which is certainly not cheap. Road tax is €120.

The official range for the I.D. Buzz with a 77kW battery is 409km but once I got up to 80per cent the charging slowed down. At 90 per cent my range had increased to 340km, so I reckon that at 100 per cent should get you 360km. But at that stage the taxi driver in the queue behind me was getting a bit impatient.

Sean Creedon

Sean Creedon is a national motoring journalist.

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