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    2016 Detroit Auto Show: 2016 Buick Avista Concept


    • Buick brings out a sexy coupe concept that may make it to production.


    At a preview event ahead of the 2016 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Buick brought out a svelte concept coupe called the Buick Avista.

     

    The concept is powered by a 400 horsepower 3.0 liter, twin-turbo V6 that sends power to the rear wheels. The engine features stop-start technology and GM's cylinder deactivation to improve fuel economy. This engine may sound familiar to you as it is one of the engines that will be available on the 2016 Cadillac CT6. No transmission is mentioned.

     

    In styling, Buick went with classic flowing lines and left the B-pillar, the post at the rear of the front door, at home. The overall effect is sleek and sexy.

     

    While Buick would not disclose the platform the Avista is built on, the fact that the wheelbase is identical to Camaro (110.70") while front and rear tracks are nearly the same tells us that this is almost certainly an Alpha platform car.

     

    No word on official production possibilities, however both Holden and Opel are expected to get a similar vehicle in the mid-term future, so the chances of a production version of this car coming to pass are good.

     

     

     

    Source and Official Photos: General Motors
    Live Reveal Photos: William Maley

     

    You can follow all of our reports from the 2016 Detroit Auto Show here.

     

    Buick Press Release on Page 2



    For Release: Sunday, Jan. 10, 2016, 7 p.m. EST

     


    Buick Introduces Avista Concept


    Design elegance, performance heritage conveyed in turbocharged 2+2 coupe

     


    DETROIT – Ahead of its public debut at the North American International Auto Show, Buick today revealed the Avista concept – a 2+2 coupe that pushes the brand’s contemporary design ethos and rekindles its historic performance roots.

     

    A sleek, sweeping proportion is the foundation for this vision of a contemporary grand tourer, with a 400-horsepower twin-turbocharged V-6 driving the rear wheels and a driver-focused cockpit offering a comfortable, connected center of control.

     

    “The Avista embodies the dynamic soul of Buick,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick Sales, Service and Marketing. “It is a modern expression of the brand’s heritage of sophisticated performance, communicated with beautiful elegance.”

     

    The Avista’s uninterrupted body lines stretch front to rear, suggesting motion – resembling Buick’s design language introduced on the Avenir concept and carried into production on the 2017 LaCrosse. The absence of conventional B-pillars between the doors and rear side windows enhances the flowing profile.

     

    “There is elegant simplicity in the Avista’s surfaces, which speak to the purity of the car’s performance, and a timeless beauty that’s a hallmark of Buick design,” said Bryan Nesbitt, executive director Global Buick Design. “It was designed to capture the spirit of the perfect drive.”

     

    Marking the front and rear, Buick evolves its signature wing-shaped lighting with “soft curtain” elements that create illuminated “halos” around lamps’ edges, suggesting a three-dimensional shape and sculpture. Their design forecasts the evolution of Buick’s production lighting features, while the Avista’s grille features the brand’s new winged tri-shield insignia set against a three-dimensional mesh background.

     

    Additional exterior features include:

    • A 110.7-inch (2,811 mm) wheelbase and 63-inch (1,601 mm) front/62.9-inch (1,598 mm) rear tracks for sporty proportions and an aggressive stance
    • Twenty-inch aluminum wheels with color-toned accents match the car’s Dark Sapphire Jewel exterior
    • Front fender vents with chrome accents evolve Buick’s signature fender ports.

     


    Performance-oriented, modern cockpit
    Like the exterior, the Avista’s 2+2 interior is defined by flowing, uninterrupted lines conveying elegance through simplicity – with intense technical and surfaces details, in everything from 3D-printed door and seat trim to a future vision of Buick’s IntelliLink, with touchscreen controls on a widescreen instrument panel display.

     

    The center console also incorporates touchscreen controls and extends to the rear seating area. Open side storage compartments built into the front of the console are enabled by the new Electronic Precision Shift, similar to the 2017 LaCrosse.

     

    A Superior Blue foundation color echoes the exterior and is complemented with Mist Gray leather seating inserts, console trim and door trim. Exposed carbon fiber and aluminum accents throughout reinforce the precision of the performance-oriented driving experience. The fading pattern on the seats, console and doors were inspired by waves receding at a beach’s edge.

     

    “Waves, whether from the sea or in the sand, are all about motion and flow,” said Nesbitt. “That’s exactly what this concept is all about – flowing design and the purity of the driving experience.”

     

    Buick designers enhanced the passengers’ sensory experiences with next-generation QuietTuning and air-quality control, including advanced noise cancellation technology, ionic air purifiers and aromatherapy.

     

    The Avista also advances Buick’s legacy of turbocharged performance, which carries forward in the 2016 Regal GS and other models. Similar to the 2017 LaCrosse, the concept twin-turbocharged 3.0L V-6 features fuel-saving Active Fuel Management (cylinder deactivation) and Stop/Start technology to complement its power with efficiency. The engine is backed by an eight-speed automatic transmission and Magnetic Ride Control delivers more precise body motion control.

     

    FAST FACT: The Buick Y-Job, introduced in 1938, is widely recognized as the auto industry’s first concept vehicle.

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    The quickest Buick ever built (I forget the name, sadly) was a turbo V6.  This is MORE than a worthy successor to that illustrious history that keeps haunting/carrying Buick's performance fans.

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    It's "okay" looking to me. 400hp, yes please. There is just something that isn't "killin' it" for me and I'm not sure what it is. Maybe it's that it still just looks too concept-like to me and not like something that we would actually see on the roads. 

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    Knocked outta the park again.. My only issue is that this needs to show up sooner rather than later. I have been told that the Avenir is going to production. It obviously will get some slight tweaks, but Omega needs volume. I would think that from a business stand-point Alpha could use this Camaro redo as a Buick. Pontiac and the Firebird no longer exist... Camaro needs a production mate. Obviously so do the ATS and CTS if GM is not gonna variant the hell out of it over at Cadillac. It is still my belief that base don what JDN has said that the CTS is going to Omega come 2018 and the redo to the "CTx" changeover. 

     

    What the hell does this have to do with Buick??? GM's desire to twindle down platforms with essentially TWO RWD and TWO FWD for all cars and CUVs

     

     

    Like the 5series which shares a platform with the BMW 7 Series and is essentially a downsized 7 Series, the CTS will most likely be getting Omega as its bones, and be the same as the 5series in terms of sharing a larger platform. Basically the (current CTS)CT5 or 4 will be a "SWB CT6" still with the same body length as the current CTS, just larger inside via a wider and more space efficient platform called Omega. Count the need for Buick to chime in and get a flagship larger than the LAX for China and U.S (possibly). The "Avista" goes to Buick because they are continuing the trend down the age demographic.. and a sporty coupe could be the fix and seriously help Alpha along with the Camaro. 
     
     
     
    Again... and based on what JDN said a few months ago about the next "CTS" and next "ATS" we should be seeing a simple change of size formula for the sake of these issues that critics have brought up about the legroom etc. I'm thinking for the most part the Alpha based ATS replacement will essentially get the Chinese ATS-L Wheelbase of 112.6 inch vs what it has right now of 109.3. This would dwarf the current 3series' 110.6 in WB by a few inches. I think that the ATS replacement will be, along with the Sub-ATS, the only Cadillacs on the Alpha platform, with the Camaro, and this Avista helping out with the numbers a bit more. 
     
    The CTS replacement will probably go to Omega. I could see it staying at 196 inchs.. and getting a bump in Wheelbase (currently at 114.6 inches) too coming in at around 117 in N.Amer, like the 5Series. It has been said that the CT6 handles as well as the current CTS.. so certainly I would think that an OMega based... smaller than CT6... CTS would handle as well or better, not losing any of its agility, and losing a few hundred lbs in the change over. This would be beneficial in amortizing the Omega platform even quicker.. (altho I would still push it out to an Impala at Chevy and a Park Ave or Avenir at Buick) along with the CT7 and CT8
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    Several things:

    Holden is supposed to get something rear drive when Commodore moves to front wheel drive or dies.  Holden Monaro is what you may be looking at. They are not sending Camaro to Australia.
    Do not put the "Riviera" name on this car.  We had a Riviera that was this small from 1986-1988 and it was a disaster and a joke. Riviera is a name reserved for a larger personal luxury coupe.
    If this goes into production in the United States, it is essentially  is filling that space left by Pontiac Firebird.
    Cadillac has to push up market too. They are doing this with Cadillac.
     

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    Several things:

    Holden is supposed to get something rear drive when Commodore moves to front wheel drive or dies.  Holden Monaro is what you may be looking at. They are not sending Camaro to Australia.

    Do not put the "Riviera" name on this car.  We had a Riviera that was this small from 1986-1988 and it was a disaster and a joke. Riviera is a name reserved for a larger personal luxury coupe.

    If this goes into production in the United States, it is essentially  is filling that space left by Pontiac Firebird.

    Cadillac has to push up market too. They are doing this with Cadillac.

     

     

     

    Precisely what I said above your post. This Avista is and could be the PROPER way to present the "Firebird" which was supposed to be a more upscale take on the Camaro from git. The only issue I have is that its look is so radical for the brand.. so luxurious that it begs the question of WHAT THE EFF is Cadillac gonna do to one up it? The Avenir, as nice as the concept was.. still, IMO, cannot touch the El Miraj. Cadillac needs a radical coupe to one-up this and be ready for production starting n 2018 with the new Caddy take of the CTS.. probably on Omega... or the El Miraj.. CT7, better be ready to go. Because the El Miraj.. still makes this gorgeous rich Buick coupe look plebeian.

     

     

    160110213937-2016-naias-buick-avista-780

     

    cadillac-elmiraj-04.jpg

     

     

     

     

     

    and yes.. I can definitely see this as a new Holden Commodore coupe, as well as an Opel. Of course Opel is getting the Monza, which shares a few bits with this Buick as U can see by the face

     

     

    image.jpg

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    Absolutely stunning.

     

    I would buy this over any comparably priced sport/lux coupe by an avalanche. The 4 Series, RC, and C Coupe look down right dowdy and cheap compared to this.

     

    I hope it makes it to production, and does so largely intact. 

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    Dear Buick and Cadillac,

     

    Quit showing us gorgeous concepts and then not build them. Really, this would be FANTASTIC for Buick.  I wouldn't call the whole line he Grand national, but a limited all black tweaked to at least 450 HP would make a great return for the GN/GNX.

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    Dear Buick and Cadillac,

     

    Quit showing us gorgeous coupe concepts and then not building hem. 

     

     

    This. I agree wholeheartedly. Now.. if they built these concepts.. would U buy? They built the Converj concept.. they built the Provoq (SRX) concept.. the XTS-Concept.. CTS-Coupe concept.. they even built the Camaro5 concept.. The Beat even came out as a the Spark almost all completely intact. DID U BUY?

     

    I look around daily and I see a lot of nameplates running round from companies that built concepts that never saw the day of light. Hell. Have U seen what6 is gonna go in production as the Continental? All that Hoopla over whether it was soooooooo revolutionary over the CT6 and what we seem to be getting is a different take on an upgraded Taurus

     

     

    Lincoln-Continental.jpg

     

     

     

    vs 

     

     

    eq6op0.jpg

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    If I had the funds, i would buy either in a heartbeat.  The Buick would probably be much more likely for me.  I LOVE he look.  It has a sculpted swoopiness and sporty look while the El Mirag is all upstanding luxury and simply sculpted beauty. 

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    If I had the funds, i would buy either in a heartbeat.  The Buick would probably be much more likely for me.  I LOVE he look.  It has a sculpted swoopiness and sporty look while the El Mirag is all upstanding luxury and simply sculpted beauty. 

     

     

    BTW... this thing has the same wheelbase as the Camaro.. I am thinking that despite its perceived look.. it is in no way the same size as the El Miraj.. more like the size of the Camaro. . The El Miraj is about the size of the CT6.. or 204inches long. The Camaros are in the 188 inch size

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    If I had the funds, i would buy either in a heartbeat.  The Buick would probably be much more likely for me.  I LOVE he look.  It has a sculpted swoopiness and sporty look while the El Mirag is all upstanding luxury and simply sculpted beauty. 

     

     

    BTW... this thing has the same wheelbase as the Camaro.. I am thinking that despite its perceived look.. it is in no way the same size as the El Miraj.. more like the size of the Camaro. . The El Miraj is about the size of the CT6.. or 204inches long. The Camaros are in the 188 inch size

     

    Oh yes, this is rue so 2 totally different markets in any case.  Just another reason they should build both (without straying further away from the concepts than necessary. 

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    I had to think long and hard....not about  this Buick..I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THIS THING!

     

    For posting in here...

    Anyhoo, life continues and I understand reasons.

     

     

    This thing is GREAT.

     

    This makes the ATS coupe (and it dont matter if V Series is included) OBSOLETE!

    This makes ANY BMW coupe in 2 and 4 Series trim OBSOLETE!

    The Audi A5, which was a beauty itself, has made the A5 look like an average joe.

     

    Yes Casa, how does Cadillac top this???!!!

    Well...this is definitely a good thing for Cadillac as good 'ol fashioned INTERNAL competition is a good thing! Just as how it was in the "good 'ol days".

    Both brands could feed off each other.

     

    As for naming this car goes.

     

    1. I DON'T want Grand National or GN or GNX or GS or GSX...the Avista is PONY CAR sized, not MIDSIZED muscle

     

    2. This is NOT a Riviera. Someone else pointed out that a Riviera was a PERSONAL LUXURY COUPE....that suggests a BIGGER car.

     

    3. I dont even want Wildcat, although Wildcat might fot this car perfectly.

    Why I dont want Wildcat?

    Because Buick has revived itself quite successfully in North America with new nameplates.

    Enclave, Verano, Encore are all new names that enjoy HUUUUGE success.

     

    Lacrosse is a luke warm success as Lacrosse debuted during the "old GM" era. So has Enclave, but the Enclave was part of the "new GM" before going bankrupt while the Lacrosse was a W-Body...

     

    Regal...not quite successful...

     

    So...I see a pattern. An old name glorifying the past may not be the answer. A new name BLASTING TOWARDS the FUTURE making a FUTURE legend in my opinion is the way to go.  Wildcat was a GREAT car...back in the 1960s...I think its time for Buick to recreate a new legend.

     

    With the exception of Riviera...the name Riviera should be kept...because the name also oozes cool and ritziness and...European...notice how Verano also has an air of Euroness to it?...

     

    Come to think of it, Avenir is a French word for future...

    I dont like the name Avista though.

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    To be perfectly honest, I don't get this concept car at all. I don't see any Buick family resemblance, I don't see any significant throwback design cues, I see a great looking sports car that could wear any one of 10 different brand badges on the grille and get away with it.

     

    Beyond design, where does this fit in Buick's (or GM's) product line? Between the Camaro SS and ATS-V Coupe while using Cadillac's brand new 3.0T? GM wants three compact sports coupes? IMO Buick needs the gorgeous full size omega-based Avenir FAR more than a redundant alpha-based small coupe.

    Edited by cp-the-nerd
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    Well lets get one thing straight. THIS IS NOT A FIREBIRD!

    The fact is this is the kind of car Pontiac always wanted but was left wanting to have. For way too many years the Firebird was a Camaro with better styling but it was always a car for the

    show off in all of us.

    The Buick we have here is a car that is more upscale and refined from the Camaro. It is a car that will be able to better go head to head with an Audi A5 than a Mustang. This is a global GT for not just Buick but Opel, Vauxhall and Holden.

    As for Buick Resemblance there is a really good reason for that. You want people to think you have changed and you are a new and improved brand you have to let go of the past. Lets face it the Buick line has had few bright spots since the 60's. While not offensive they really have not stood out and shined much since the 65 Riv GS.

    The key here is to make a car sans the old thinking of waterfalls, Portholes and old names Grand Pa's car had. While many fans may wax sentimental too often the real target group that you want to consider the car gets old vibes that really have no hold of their heart. It is time to step out with new styling, New models and new names to take Buick into the future to be the company they can be and not what they have been.

    As for this car for production. The exterior is pretty close to production sans the lack of the B pillar. The Camaro has one for a reason so I would expect one added here. Hidden under glass but added. The interior is no where near production here.

    I would like to know what we don't know yet. This would be a 2018 at the earliest and if Holden is included would this be a Alpha II? We know Cadillac is working on one but we have yet to learn when it would be ready. I would assume the updated platform is where the RHD would appear.

    This is a really global car and a refined GT coupe. It will really give GM a car like they have not really have had outside the CTS coupe.

    So please treat this car as it's own deal and stop putting labels on it. Let it roll out and become it's own model and do the kind of work Buick needs to change minds.

    This is a White Space car that the globalization of Buick is permitting. A business case like this may not have passes with out the ability to sell this globally. While we must take in some Chinese SUV modes this car is one of the positive things that we will see and get because of the global reach of Buick. There is so much more of this to come if we just let them get the work done. We got delayed a bit but now that Opel is fully on board as well Holden joining in this three way may just be one of the best thing GM has put together in a long time.

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    It looks pretty similar to the Infiniti Q60.

     

    Buick has said there are no plans to build it as of yet.  I don't get why they drag their feet on stuff like this, Avenir, El Mirag, Ciel, etc.  Take a chance and build a halo car.   Not everything has to be a crossover on a platform shared with 4 other products. 

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    It looks pretty similar to the Infiniti Q60.

     

    Buick has said there are no plans to build it as of yet.  I don't get why they drag their feet on stuff like this, Avenir, El Mirag, Ciel, etc.  Take a chance and build a halo car.   Not everything has to be a crossover on a platform shared with 4 other products.

    What is not to get?

    It takes 5 years to bring a car to market. The Cadillacs were not based on the omega and from what I had been told would not shrink down to the size of a Coupe.

    In the case of this car the Alpha is not RHD able as of this point. That tells us that for it to be come the Holden it may become that there is an updated or replacement platform for this car. Cadillac is working on a Alpha update or replacement depending on what they want to call it.

    Come on you have been around the number of people here that know how things work, something has had to rub off someplace.

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    Not making Alpha RHD compatible when they wanted to make Cadillac a global brand makes no sense from the start.

     

    However, they make a Camaro, they make an ATS.  It wouldn't take that much to make a Buick coupe on the same chassis, same wheel base as Camaro, same 3.6 V6 and transmission as Camaro.  You put a new body on it, put the LaCrosse dashboard in it, soften the suspension from the Camaro and you are done.  GM knows badge engineering better than anyone else.  They could have this car on sale in 2 years if they wanted to.

     

    As far as Cadillac goes, the CT6 is coming out this year, they could have made it a bolder, more luxurious car, but they played it safe.  They could have co-developed a coupe to launch with it, but they didn't.  Adding a body style to an existing vehicle isn't that hard.  And GM has proved they can do it, the Camaro and Corvette convertibles were on sale within months of the coupe.

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    I love it, but I see no future for that kind of car in Buick's lineup for the medium term. 5-6 years.

     

    Cadillac needs the kind of car that this concept represents.

     

    And they needed it ages ago. Now the opportunity has passed. GM can't have the fortune of learning after the moment passes that it would have been right to take a concept and bring it to production.

     

    They've learned from being too trigger-ready since the Converj/ELR results.

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    To be perfectly honest, I don't get this concept car at all. I don't see any Buick family resemblance, I don't see any significant throwback design cues, I see a great looking sports car that could wear any one of 10 different brand badges on the grille and get away with it.

     

    Beyond design, where does this fit in Buick's (or GM's) product line? Between the Camaro SS and ATS-V Coupe while using Cadillac's brand new 3.0T? GM wants three compact sports coupes? IMO Buick needs the gorgeous full size omega-based Avenir FAR more than a redundant alpha-based small coupe.

    this ^^^^^

     

    thanks for saving me a bunch of typing

     

    which Buick style is this now, btw, is it the let's make our best Asian car the chinese will like, or the best knockoff Opel, or ????

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      “Our go-to-market strategy in 2017 is the same as 2016,” McNeil said. “We are focused on strengthening our brands, growing retail sales and share, reducing daily rental deliveries and maintaining our operating discipline.”
      GM is optimistic about the year ahead because the economy is strong and the company’s four brands are dramatically expanding their product offerings in fast-growing crossover segments.
      Industry sales are expected to remain at or near record levels, with higher GM retail sales and market share on a year-over-year basis. GM’s deliveries to daily rental companies are expected to decline as a percentage of total sales for the third year in a row. GM will continue to match production with customer demand. Previously announced plans to reduce passenger car production at plants in Lordstown, Ohio and Lansing, Michigan were implemented at the end of January. GM’s operating discipline will help drive continued improvements in brand health and resale values. During January, IHS Markit said GM had the highest overall loyalty to a manufacturer for the second year in a row. Also, Kelley Blue Book gave seven Chevrolet and GMC vehicles awards for outstanding resale value, more than any other manufacturer. Ten all-new or recently redesigned crossovers are expected to drive GM’s 2017 sales results, including two new compact models, which will compete in the industry’s largest segment. Crossover Launches by Brand
      Chevrolet will have the industry’s broadest and freshest lineup of utility vehicles behind the 238-mile range Bolt EV; the 2018 Equinox, which arrives in showrooms soon; and the all-new Traverse, which arrives this summer. At Buick, crossovers are expected to account for as much as 75 percent of retail deliveries, up from 66 percent in 2016, driven by the Encore, Envision and Enclave. GMC, which has the highest average transaction prices of any non-luxury brand, will launch the all-new 2018 Terrain in late summer. It will complement the redesigned Acadia, which went on sale in late summer 2016. Cadillac will benefit from a full year of production of the new XT5 crossover, which is now the second best-selling vehicle in its segment.
    • By William Maley
      As we accurately judged a few weeks back, Volkswagen's concept for the Detroit Auto Show is another Microbus. But don't call it that, instead call it the I.D. Buzz.
      Volkswagen is clear in their press release that the I.D. Buzz "is not a retro design on 22-inch wheels." We're not fully sure on that because it looks like Microbus with the large Volkswagen emblem up front, two-tone paint, and a large area of glass. The only point you can give Volkswagen about it not being a 'retro design' is the front end not being so blunt. The interior can seat up to eight people and there are some nice details such as a wooden floor and LED ambient lighting. Technology features include a removable tablet for passengers, augmented reality heads-up display, and a steering wheel that retracts when the vehicle is put into an autonomous driving mode.
      Like the first I.D. concept, the I.D. Buzz uses Volkswagen's upcoming Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB). For the Buzz, the MEB platform is extended to house a 111-kWh battery pack and two electric motors. Volkswagen says output stands at 369 horsepower while range is estimated at 270 miles on a "predicted US driving cycle". As we mentioned a moment ago, the I.D. Buzz will have the autonomous capability thanks to four onboard laser scanners, ultrasonic and radar sensors, and a number of camera around the vehicle.
      The question of course when it comes to Volkswagen and their Microbus concepts is will it go into production or not. In the case of the I.D. Buzz, that is a maybe. We know Volkswagen is working on an electric van due out sometime between 2020-2025 and this could be the one. But given Volkswagen's track record, we're not fully counting on it either.
      Source: Volkswagen
      Press Release is on Page 2


      I.D. BUZZ CONCEPT MAKES ITS WORLD DEBUT AT THE NORTH AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW IN DETROIT
      Versatile, zero-emissions, all-wheel drive vehicle is a Microbus for the future All-electric driving range of up to 270 miles, comparable to gasoline engined cars Maximum flexibility: I.D. electric drive system allows seating for up to eight and two luggage compartments Focus on people: in the fully autonomous “I.D. Pilot” driving mode, the driver’s seat can be turned 180 degrees to face the rear Traction for any terrain: electric all-wheel drive with two motors and 369 horsepower Head-up display projects information via augmented reality Vehicle features fully autonomous driving capability Flexible center console with tablet display and Beats® Bluetooth® loudspeakers can be used outside the vehicle Detroit, January 2017 — The era of electric mobility has begun, and Volkswagen will be shaping it with the I.D. BUZZ concept presented at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. A Microbus for a new era, the electric concept forges links between the origins of the Volkswagen brand and its electrifying future. The I.D. BUZZ, like the compact I.D. presented at the Paris Motor Show, is another new Volkswagen vehicle that gives compelling design to electric mobility and reflects a transformation of the brand and its models. 
      Dr. Herbert Diess, Chairman of the Board of Management for the Volkswagen brand, says: “The Volkswagen brand’s big electric offensive begins in the year 2020 with a completely new vehicle architecture. That is when we will be launching an entirely new generation of fully connected, all-electric vehicles to the market. By 2025 we want to be selling one million of these vehicles annually. We are making electric mobility the new trademark of Volkswagen.”
      The I.D. BUZZ zero-emissions vehicle conceptually follows the new Volkswagen brand strategy. Its claim is: “We make the future real.” Four fields of innovation form the basis for this strategy: 
      Smart Sustainability—Volkswagen is advancing the development of innovative high-volume electric car models Automated Driving—Volkswagen will make cars even safer and more comfortable by means of autonomous driving Intuitive Usability—Volkswagen is focusing on cars that are intuitive to operate and feature new display and control concepts Connected Community—In the future, Volkswagen will interconnect humans, cars and the environment with a Volkswagen user identity Volkswagen is showing just how multifaceted electric mobility can be in Detroit with the I.D. BUZZ concept vehicle—maximum space utilization with all-wheel drive, electric motors at the front and rear axles, a fully autonomous driving mode (“I.D. Pilot”) and a new generation of display elements and controls.
      The “I.D. BUZZ” name was hardly an arbitrary choice. I.D. stands for “Identity,” “Idea,” “Individual,” “Intelligent” and “Iconic Design”. BUZZ, on the other hand, is a phonetic word play on “bus” and refers to the silent “buzzing” of the drive system. 
      “The I.D. BUZZ is a next-generation vehicle based on the new Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB), offering comfort and plenty of space,” says Dr. Frank Welsch, Volkswagen Member of the Board of Management responsible for Development. “The overall concept of the I.D. BUZZ points the way to the future. This concept vehicle is the world's first electric multi-purpose vehicle to be equipped with a fully autonomous driving mode. It carries the feeling of freedom of the Microbus over to a completely new era of mobility.”
      Thanks to its MEB underpinnings, space utilization is better in the I.D. BUZZ than in any other electric vehicle. An excursion with two families over the weekend? A gig with the band in another city? A vacation trip with bikes and boards? Driving to a business meeting with colleagues who need to prepare on the way? None of these scenarios pose a problem with the multi-variable seating layout and interactive networking of the I.D. BUZZ. Using an extended MEB-XL platform, this concept vehicle—which is 194.6 inches long, 77.8 inches wide and 77.3 inches tall—offers an extraordinarily spacious interior for its class.
      The I.D. BUZZ is not only huge inside, but its technical concept makes it one of the world's most comfortable cars. It has a silent drive system and an extremely long wheelbase of 129.9 inches. The floor-mounted battery lowers the vehicle’s center of gravity and delivers ideal weight distribution. The suspension layout—including multi-link rear suspension with integrated drive units and decoupled subframes at front and rear, as well as air suspension at the rear axle using electronically controlled dampers—delivers premium class comfort, high cornering power, and ideal acoustics.
      The zero-emissions all-wheel drive system has a total output of 369 horsepower and an NEDC electric driving range of 600 kilometers (270 miles on a predicted U.S. driving cycle). One electric motor at the front axle and one at the rear each deliver a power output of 201 hp, distributed between the two axles by an “electric propshaft.” The I.D. BUZZ shown in Detroit can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in about 5 seconds, with a governed top speed of 99 mph. 
      The vehicle’s 111 kWh battery can be charged to 80 percent of its capacity within 30 minutes using the Combined Charging System (CCS) or an inductive charging interface, with a charging rate of 150 kW. As an alternative, the battery can be charged from any conventional household outlet and at charging stations. The all-wheel drive configuration is just one of several that are conceivable. Thanks to the MEB, it would be just as easy to equip the I.D. BUZZ with a rear-wheel drive setup producing up to 268 hp and a smaller 83 kWh battery, depending on the region and purpose of use.
      Automated Driving 
      The I.D. BUZZ is the world’s first fully autonomous multi-purpose vehicle. A slight push on the steering wheel makes it retract and merge into the instrument panel, switching the I.D. BUZZ from manual control to the fully autonomous “I.D. Pilot” mode that could make it into production by 2025. In this mode, the wheel is decoupled from the steering gear via a newly developed steering column system. The ambient lighting then switches from white light (“Drive”) to mood lighting that is warm and relaxed. At the same time, the distribution of ambient lighting is extended to the rear seating area. Simultaneously, the status of the I.D. BUZZ can be seen at all times on the tablet and the augmented reality head-up display.
      Now driving on its own, the zero-emissions concept has already activated its onboard laser scanners. Four of them extend from the roof in “I.D. Pilot” mode. The cleanly styled roof sensors call attention to the fully autonomous mode by indirect lighting.
      The I.D. BUZZ is not only able to detect other road users with its laser sensors, but also with the assistance of ultrasonic sensors, radar sensors, side area view cameras and a front camera. Traffic data is also continually acquired and compared with the vehicle data via the cloud. Fully autonomous mode is deactivated by touching the steering wheel or by pressing the brake or accelerator pedal.
      Volkswagen User-ID 
      I.D. knows who will be at the wheel, thanks to the Volkswagen User-ID. This is an individual profile that stores the personal seat and air conditioning settings, favorite radio stations and songs, sound system settings, exterior sound, configuration of the navigation system, type of ambient lighting and contact information for the driver’s friends and business associates. This profile can be retrieved securely via the cloud. 
      Consequently, the I.D. BUZZ also recognizes which person is entering the car or wants to take the steering wheel at any given time via the authorized user’s smartphone—the Digital Key. As soon as a person approaches the vehicle, the sensor surfaces for opening the door light up. If the person’s hand is very close to the surface, that individual door is opened. Using the Volkswagen User-ID and a relevant smartphone app, passengers in the vehicle can also control infotainment functions and input intermediate destinations into the navigation system. The route is shown on a tablet. 
      Exterior Design  
      The original Microbus is a legend all over the world and forms a global community. Although the I.D. BUZZ is designed for a new era, it would fit in perfectly with its predecessors.
      Klaus Bischoff, Volkswagen Head of Design, says: “The I.D. BUZZ is not a retro design on 22-inch wheels; rather, we have taken the logical next step forward in development using what is in all likelihood the most successful design of its kind in the world. The entire design is extremely clean with its homogeneous surfaces and monolithic silhouette. The future and origins of Volkswagen design DNA combine here to create a new icon.”
      The best example of the interplay of familiar and new elements is the front end with its characteristic ”V” and likeable ”face”—it’s clearly a Microbus, but a completely new interpretation. Oliver Stefani, Head of Volkswagen Exterior Design, says, “Instead of the round headlights used in the original model, in designing the I.D. BUZZ we opted for slender LED systems, which not only turn night into day, but also interactively communicate with other road users and pedestrians.” Similar to the compact I.D., the bumpers also integrate a matte aluminum honeycomb design, with illuminated outer sections.
      Extremely short body overhangs also define the vehicle. This applies equally to the roofline with its charismatic front overhang and three stylized air vents in the rear roof pillars, a small tribute to the T1. Each detail has, however, been re-interpreted and implemented in a new context.
      At the front, wrap-around ambient lighting forms a new era equivalent of chrome trim. It is actually an accent strip made of matte aluminum that is embedded in what designers call a sharp undercut. Indirect ambient lighting has been integrated into this full wraparound undercut, which also forms the ”V” of the front hood. When it is dark outside, this creates a unique light signature together with the backlit front and rear VW logos and the lighting elements in the front bumpers.
      The I.D. BUZZ is also unmistakable from the rear. Here, the slender full-LED lights and large painted surfaces make up the iconic design. The tailgate extends far down into the bumper to give a low load sill height of just 23.6 inches. Thanks to its compact electric drive, the I.D. BUZZ not only offers a rear luggage compartment of between 23.3 to 162.5 cubic feet, but also a front trunk of 6.1 cubic feet. The doors and trunklids are power operated: opening the tailgate, front doors and rear sliding doors is initiated by sensors outside the vehicle. Thanks to the Digital Key, all the user needs to do is hold his or her hand over a marked area for entry.
      There are clear design parallels to the I.D. shown in Paris. The front LED lights, wrap-around LED taillights, homogeneously integrated bumpers, side sills stylistically raised at the center of the door area, laser scanners on the roof and the aluminum-alloy wheel design combine to form the design insignia of Volkswagen’s future electric mobility.
      There are few cars in the world that look as good in classic two-tone paint as the Microbus, which is why it was a must for the new I.D. BUZZ. The car is painted in Silver Metallic above the seam that integrates the ambient lighting and in Cyber Yellow Pearl Effect below that line. The yellow hue is also found on the sidewalls of the tires, while the 22-inch aluminum-alloy wheels are painted in Galvano Gray Metallic.
      The I.D. BUZZ communicates with its surroundings via the LED lighting at the front end. The LED headlights interactively mimic the gestures of the human eye and thus interact with other traffic. The concept vehicle masters these light scenarios:
      Parking. When all systems of the I.D. BUZZ are shut down it looks from the front as if its “eyes” are closed. When the I.D. BUZZ is parked, just a narrow, small LED strip is visible in the headlights. Opening. When the I.D. is “awakened”, it greets its driver and passengers with a 360-degree light show. First, the Volkswagen logos light up. This is followed by the wrap-around ambient lighting. In the final phase of this light show, the I.D. BUZZ opens its “eyes.” Driving. The Volkswagen logos, wrap-round ambient lighting, Daytime Running Lights and the LED headlights are always active while driving. As the car accelerates, the “eyes” adjust to the higher speed by adopting a more dynamic light signature. Automated. A distinctive feature of the fully autonomous driving mode is that the laser scanners in the roof are extended and illuminated. As the car speeds up, the LED “eyes” look ahead, giving the car a sportier appearance. In addition, the “eyes” are interactive in the fully autonomous driving mode. If the I.D. BUZZ wants to turn, for instance, the LED headlights look in the direction the car is going to turn. To top it off, if the vehicle detects people at the side of the road, it looks at them. Through this interaction, the Volkswagen alerts pedestrians and cyclists to its presence. Interior Design 
      “The design of the concept places people as the focus; it should appeal to them and invite them to come in,” says Klaus Bischoff. Awaiting them there is an interior that combines the world of the automobile with the atmosphere of a lounge. Tomasz Bachorski, Head of Interior Design of the Volkswagen brand, explains the next era of interior design: “From now on, we will be networking the vehicle much more intensively to make it more interactive. The interior will become a sort of family room, a mobile place where you feel at home.” 
      As a result, the classic cockpit no longer exists in the I.D. BUZZ. In place of traditional instruments or controls is an intuitively operated cockpit consisting of:
      Touch-sensitive steering wheel (multifunction steering wheel with capacitive surfaces) Augmented reality head-up display “I.D. Box” center console (including a tablet usable outside the vehicle) In the “I.D. Pilot” mode, the front seats can be electrically unlatched and rotated so they face the rear, after the “I.D. Box” multifunctional center console is moved rearward. The seating system is flexibly designed to be like the living space at home or a lounge area. This versatility is based on a seat rail system that is integrated in the flat floor and on adjustable and folding seats. The seatbacks of the individual second row seats can be folded to form tables. At stops, the third row can be made into a bed, enabling the I.D. BUZZ to be used for overnight voyages. When the trip is resumed, clever detail solutions make travel more pleasant, such as softly padded rear side sun visors that can be moved and are designed so that a passenger can lean on them. Individually placeable cushions also underscore the cozy atmosphere of the interior, which is flooded with light thanks to its large windows and two-part panoramic roof.
      The warm interior colors are also in keeping with the lounge character. For instance, the dashpad in front of the driver and front passenger transitions from Magnet Metallic to Moon White Metallic, and the dashpad and door panel structures are illuminated by the ambient lighting as well. Stylish details include:
      Wood floor. The floor is made of fine, Silver Birch wood. The bright color underscores the cozy character of the interior. In the rear seating area, aluminum inlays in the wood take up the honeycomb pattern of the dashpad and touch-sensitive steering wheel as well as the front bumper. Door trim. The top sections of the doors are covered with sophisticated metallic leatherette. The interplay of color is underscored by the transition from the darker driver’s area to the brighter passenger zone. The designers have upgraded the lower sections of the door trim panels with a cream-colored knitted fabric throughout the rear seating area. Seat fabrics. Seats are covered in an innovative knit fabric that features a graduated honeycomb pattern. The refined knitting technique used to produce the individual diamond shapes allows a light metallic background material show through. Accentuated yellow details such as piping and seat belts showcase the fresh look of the I.D. BUZZ while creating a connection between exterior and interior. As soon as the driver’s seat is occupied, the steering wheel, which is retracted into the dashpad in parking mode, extends out, and the indicators and buttons on the steering wheel light up simultaneously. In parallel, the I.D. BUZZ activates the augmented reality head-up display and the tablet in the “I.D. Box.” The ambient lighting also greets the driver. Close the doors, buckle up, press the brake pedal and select a gear and the I.D. BUZZ is immediately ready to start. The concept car is shut off by the “P” button on the steering wheel. When finished, the steering wheel retracts flush into the cockpit panel.
      The steering wheel of the I.D. BUZZ does not have any spokes. The wheel, trimmed with Nappa leather, is more of an interactive touchpad. This touch-sensitive steering wheel is a new concept, which allows the driver to operate the drive modes (P, R, N and D), turn signals and various menu functions as well as settings for the head-up display via touch-sensitive areas on its surface. 
      The outer region of the touchpad has a honeycomb-like light signature, as does the dashpad ahead of the driver and front passenger. Pressing on the illuminated VW logo in the middle of the touch-sensitive steering wheel initiates a switch between the “Drive” mode and “I.D. Pilot” mode; the steering wheel then retracts or extends accordingly. 
      The “I.D. Box” fits the character of the I.D. BUZZ perfectly. When the vehicle is being driven by someone, the I.D. Box is positioned between the front seats. In this case, the integrated tablet in the console is positioned to serve as a display and control surface for the driver and front passenger. The I.D. Box is also equipped with loudspeakers from Beats®, which are interconnected with the passengers’ smartphones and the sound system via Bluetooth®. When the driver switches to the “I.D. Pilot” mode, the entire “I.D. Box” moves towards the rear. Other console features include cupholders and a folding table. The console tablet (like the Beats speakers) is easy to unsnap and remove from the vehicle.
      The Volkswagen I.D. lets the I.D. BUZZ know who the driver is. The individual vehicle settings are configured accordingly, and features such as the person’s calendar are shown on the tablet. The I.D. BUZZ also knows the driver’s friends via the Volkswagen I.D. Based on this information, the car might recommend meeting with friends or suggest activities that would fit into the day’s schedule. 
      In “I.D. Pilot” autonomous mode, the system informs the driver on the tablet about changes to the calendar, for instance. If the I.D. BUZZ passes one of the driver’s favorite shops or a favorite restaurant, the car informs the driver via the tablet about the current offerings at these personal points of interest. A new era of interactive and personalized online services is beginning with the I.D. BUZZ.
      Like the compact I.D., the I.D. BUZZ is equipped with an augmented reality head-up display. Information such as navigation directions are projected as virtual images from 23 to 49 feet ahead of the car. The effect is astonishingly realistic. Directions are projected via augmented reality to show exactly where the driver is heading. Thanks to the head-up display, the navigation instructions are now part of three-dimensional surroundings that the driver can experience. Drivers can use the touch-sensitive steering wheel to modify the type and amount of information shown, adapting the system to their individual needs.
      Three levels of information density are available here:
      Level 1: “Navigation,” “Speed” and “Battery indicator” Level 2: Level 1 plus “Phone” (in “Drive” mode) and “Local offerings” (in “I.D. Pilot” mode) Level 3: Levels 1 and 2 plus “Friends” along the route (in “Drive” mode) and “Messages” (in “I.D. Pilot” mode) There are no rearview mirrors in the I.D. BUZZ. Cameras and a display have taken over that function. Where there would normally be a rearview mirror, there is a screen called the e-Mirror. Here, a monitor combines data from the exterior mirror cameras on the left and right of the vehicle and from a camera that faces directly rearward. Doing away with the side mirrors improves the aerodynamics of the vehicle.
      The lighting mood of the interior also changes according to the mode. In “Drive”, illuminated elements are lit in white. When the driver activates “I.D. Pilot”, they switch over to a warm mood color. In addition, the ambient lighting and touch-sensitive steering wheel assume warning and indicator functionality. In “Drive” mode, if the driver wants to change lanes while another vehicle is alongside, a warning signal is shown on the relevant side of the dashpad. This means that the LED warning indicators for the Blind Spot Monitor, which are located in the door mirrors in today’s vehicles, migrate into the interior where they are even more obvious to the driver.

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      As we accurately judged a few weeks back, Volkswagen's concept for the Detroit Auto Show is another Microbus. But don't call it that, instead call it the I.D. Buzz.
      Volkswagen is clear in their press release that the I.D. Buzz "is not a retro design on 22-inch wheels." We're not fully sure on that because it looks like Microbus with the large Volkswagen emblem up front, two-tone paint, and a large area of glass. The only point you can give Volkswagen about it not being a 'retro design' is the front end not being so blunt. The interior can seat up to eight people and there are some nice details such as a wooden floor and LED ambient lighting. Technology features include a removable tablet for passengers, augmented reality heads-up display, and a steering wheel that retracts when the vehicle is put into an autonomous driving mode.
      Like the first I.D. concept, the I.D. Buzz uses Volkswagen's upcoming Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB). For the Buzz, the MEB platform is extended to house a 111-kWh battery pack and two electric motors. Volkswagen says output stands at 369 horsepower while range is estimated at 270 miles on a "predicted US driving cycle". As we mentioned a moment ago, the I.D. Buzz will have the autonomous capability thanks to four onboard laser scanners, ultrasonic and radar sensors, and a number of camera around the vehicle.
      The question of course when it comes to Volkswagen and their Microbus concepts is will it go into production or not. In the case of the I.D. Buzz, that is a maybe. We know Volkswagen is working on an electric van due out sometime between 2020-2025 and this could be the one. But given Volkswagen's track record, we're not fully counting on it either.
      Source: Volkswagen
      Press Release is on Page 2


      I.D. BUZZ CONCEPT MAKES ITS WORLD DEBUT AT THE NORTH AMERICAN INTERNATIONAL AUTO SHOW IN DETROIT
      Versatile, zero-emissions, all-wheel drive vehicle is a Microbus for the future All-electric driving range of up to 270 miles, comparable to gasoline engined cars Maximum flexibility: I.D. electric drive system allows seating for up to eight and two luggage compartments Focus on people: in the fully autonomous “I.D. Pilot” driving mode, the driver’s seat can be turned 180 degrees to face the rear Traction for any terrain: electric all-wheel drive with two motors and 369 horsepower Head-up display projects information via augmented reality Vehicle features fully autonomous driving capability Flexible center console with tablet display and Beats® Bluetooth® loudspeakers can be used outside the vehicle Detroit, January 2017 — The era of electric mobility has begun, and Volkswagen will be shaping it with the I.D. BUZZ concept presented at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. A Microbus for a new era, the electric concept forges links between the origins of the Volkswagen brand and its electrifying future. The I.D. BUZZ, like the compact I.D. presented at the Paris Motor Show, is another new Volkswagen vehicle that gives compelling design to electric mobility and reflects a transformation of the brand and its models. 
      Dr. Herbert Diess, Chairman of the Board of Management for the Volkswagen brand, says: “The Volkswagen brand’s big electric offensive begins in the year 2020 with a completely new vehicle architecture. That is when we will be launching an entirely new generation of fully connected, all-electric vehicles to the market. By 2025 we want to be selling one million of these vehicles annually. We are making electric mobility the new trademark of Volkswagen.”
      The I.D. BUZZ zero-emissions vehicle conceptually follows the new Volkswagen brand strategy. Its claim is: “We make the future real.” Four fields of innovation form the basis for this strategy: 
      Smart Sustainability—Volkswagen is advancing the development of innovative high-volume electric car models Automated Driving—Volkswagen will make cars even safer and more comfortable by means of autonomous driving Intuitive Usability—Volkswagen is focusing on cars that are intuitive to operate and feature new display and control concepts Connected Community—In the future, Volkswagen will interconnect humans, cars and the environment with a Volkswagen user identity Volkswagen is showing just how multifaceted electric mobility can be in Detroit with the I.D. BUZZ concept vehicle—maximum space utilization with all-wheel drive, electric motors at the front and rear axles, a fully autonomous driving mode (“I.D. Pilot”) and a new generation of display elements and controls.
      The “I.D. BUZZ” name was hardly an arbitrary choice. I.D. stands for “Identity,” “Idea,” “Individual,” “Intelligent” and “Iconic Design”. BUZZ, on the other hand, is a phonetic word play on “bus” and refers to the silent “buzzing” of the drive system. 
      “The I.D. BUZZ is a next-generation vehicle based on the new Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB), offering comfort and plenty of space,” says Dr. Frank Welsch, Volkswagen Member of the Board of Management responsible for Development. “The overall concept of the I.D. BUZZ points the way to the future. This concept vehicle is the world's first electric multi-purpose vehicle to be equipped with a fully autonomous driving mode. It carries the feeling of freedom of the Microbus over to a completely new era of mobility.”
      Thanks to its MEB underpinnings, space utilization is better in the I.D. BUZZ than in any other electric vehicle. An excursion with two families over the weekend? A gig with the band in another city? A vacation trip with bikes and boards? Driving to a business meeting with colleagues who need to prepare on the way? None of these scenarios pose a problem with the multi-variable seating layout and interactive networking of the I.D. BUZZ. Using an extended MEB-XL platform, this concept vehicle—which is 194.6 inches long, 77.8 inches wide and 77.3 inches tall—offers an extraordinarily spacious interior for its class.
      The I.D. BUZZ is not only huge inside, but its technical concept makes it one of the world's most comfortable cars. It has a silent drive system and an extremely long wheelbase of 129.9 inches. The floor-mounted battery lowers the vehicle’s center of gravity and delivers ideal weight distribution. The suspension layout—including multi-link rear suspension with integrated drive units and decoupled subframes at front and rear, as well as air suspension at the rear axle using electronically controlled dampers—delivers premium class comfort, high cornering power, and ideal acoustics.
      The zero-emissions all-wheel drive system has a total output of 369 horsepower and an NEDC electric driving range of 600 kilometers (270 miles on a predicted U.S. driving cycle). One electric motor at the front axle and one at the rear each deliver a power output of 201 hp, distributed between the two axles by an “electric propshaft.” The I.D. BUZZ shown in Detroit can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in about 5 seconds, with a governed top speed of 99 mph. 
      The vehicle’s 111 kWh battery can be charged to 80 percent of its capacity within 30 minutes using the Combined Charging System (CCS) or an inductive charging interface, with a charging rate of 150 kW. As an alternative, the battery can be charged from any conventional household outlet and at charging stations. The all-wheel drive configuration is just one of several that are conceivable. Thanks to the MEB, it would be just as easy to equip the I.D. BUZZ with a rear-wheel drive setup producing up to 268 hp and a smaller 83 kWh battery, depending on the region and purpose of use.
      Automated Driving 
      The I.D. BUZZ is the world’s first fully autonomous multi-purpose vehicle. A slight push on the steering wheel makes it retract and merge into the instrument panel, switching the I.D. BUZZ from manual control to the fully autonomous “I.D. Pilot” mode that could make it into production by 2025. In this mode, the wheel is decoupled from the steering gear via a newly developed steering column system. The ambient lighting then switches from white light (“Drive”) to mood lighting that is warm and relaxed. At the same time, the distribution of ambient lighting is extended to the rear seating area. Simultaneously, the status of the I.D. BUZZ can be seen at all times on the tablet and the augmented reality head-up display.
      Now driving on its own, the zero-emissions concept has already activated its onboard laser scanners. Four of them extend from the roof in “I.D. Pilot” mode. The cleanly styled roof sensors call attention to the fully autonomous mode by indirect lighting.
      The I.D. BUZZ is not only able to detect other road users with its laser sensors, but also with the assistance of ultrasonic sensors, radar sensors, side area view cameras and a front camera. Traffic data is also continually acquired and compared with the vehicle data via the cloud. Fully autonomous mode is deactivated by touching the steering wheel or by pressing the brake or accelerator pedal.
      Volkswagen User-ID 
      I.D. knows who will be at the wheel, thanks to the Volkswagen User-ID. This is an individual profile that stores the personal seat and air conditioning settings, favorite radio stations and songs, sound system settings, exterior sound, configuration of the navigation system, type of ambient lighting and contact information for the driver’s friends and business associates. This profile can be retrieved securely via the cloud. 
      Consequently, the I.D. BUZZ also recognizes which person is entering the car or wants to take the steering wheel at any given time via the authorized user’s smartphone—the Digital Key. As soon as a person approaches the vehicle, the sensor surfaces for opening the door light up. If the person’s hand is very close to the surface, that individual door is opened. Using the Volkswagen User-ID and a relevant smartphone app, passengers in the vehicle can also control infotainment functions and input intermediate destinations into the navigation system. The route is shown on a tablet. 
      Exterior Design  
      The original Microbus is a legend all over the world and forms a global community. Although the I.D. BUZZ is designed for a new era, it would fit in perfectly with its predecessors.
      Klaus Bischoff, Volkswagen Head of Design, says: “The I.D. BUZZ is not a retro design on 22-inch wheels; rather, we have taken the logical next step forward in development using what is in all likelihood the most successful design of its kind in the world. The entire design is extremely clean with its homogeneous surfaces and monolithic silhouette. The future and origins of Volkswagen design DNA combine here to create a new icon.”
      The best example of the interplay of familiar and new elements is the front end with its characteristic ”V” and likeable ”face”—it’s clearly a Microbus, but a completely new interpretation. Oliver Stefani, Head of Volkswagen Exterior Design, says, “Instead of the round headlights used in the original model, in designing the I.D. BUZZ we opted for slender LED systems, which not only turn night into day, but also interactively communicate with other road users and pedestrians.” Similar to the compact I.D., the bumpers also integrate a matte aluminum honeycomb design, with illuminated outer sections.
      Extremely short body overhangs also define the vehicle. This applies equally to the roofline with its charismatic front overhang and three stylized air vents in the rear roof pillars, a small tribute to the T1. Each detail has, however, been re-interpreted and implemented in a new context.
      At the front, wrap-around ambient lighting forms a new era equivalent of chrome trim. It is actually an accent strip made of matte aluminum that is embedded in what designers call a sharp undercut. Indirect ambient lighting has been integrated into this full wraparound undercut, which also forms the ”V” of the front hood. When it is dark outside, this creates a unique light signature together with the backlit front and rear VW logos and the lighting elements in the front bumpers.
      The I.D. BUZZ is also unmistakable from the rear. Here, the slender full-LED lights and large painted surfaces make up the iconic design. The tailgate extends far down into the bumper to give a low load sill height of just 23.6 inches. Thanks to its compact electric drive, the I.D. BUZZ not only offers a rear luggage compartment of between 23.3 to 162.5 cubic feet, but also a front trunk of 6.1 cubic feet. The doors and trunklids are power operated: opening the tailgate, front doors and rear sliding doors is initiated by sensors outside the vehicle. Thanks to the Digital Key, all the user needs to do is hold his or her hand over a marked area for entry.
      There are clear design parallels to the I.D. shown in Paris. The front LED lights, wrap-around LED taillights, homogeneously integrated bumpers, side sills stylistically raised at the center of the door area, laser scanners on the roof and the aluminum-alloy wheel design combine to form the design insignia of Volkswagen’s future electric mobility.
      There are few cars in the world that look as good in classic two-tone paint as the Microbus, which is why it was a must for the new I.D. BUZZ. The car is painted in Silver Metallic above the seam that integrates the ambient lighting and in Cyber Yellow Pearl Effect below that line. The yellow hue is also found on the sidewalls of the tires, while the 22-inch aluminum-alloy wheels are painted in Galvano Gray Metallic.
      The I.D. BUZZ communicates with its surroundings via the LED lighting at the front end. The LED headlights interactively mimic the gestures of the human eye and thus interact with other traffic. The concept vehicle masters these light scenarios:
      Parking. When all systems of the I.D. BUZZ are shut down it looks from the front as if its “eyes” are closed. When the I.D. BUZZ is parked, just a narrow, small LED strip is visible in the headlights. Opening. When the I.D. is “awakened”, it greets its driver and passengers with a 360-degree light show. First, the Volkswagen logos light up. This is followed by the wrap-around ambient lighting. In the final phase of this light show, the I.D. BUZZ opens its “eyes.” Driving. The Volkswagen logos, wrap-round ambient lighting, Daytime Running Lights and the LED headlights are always active while driving. As the car accelerates, the “eyes” adjust to the higher speed by adopting a more dynamic light signature. Automated. A distinctive feature of the fully autonomous driving mode is that the laser scanners in the roof are extended and illuminated. As the car speeds up, the LED “eyes” look ahead, giving the car a sportier appearance. In addition, the “eyes” are interactive in the fully autonomous driving mode. If the I.D. BUZZ wants to turn, for instance, the LED headlights look in the direction the car is going to turn. To top it off, if the vehicle detects people at the side of the road, it looks at them. Through this interaction, the Volkswagen alerts pedestrians and cyclists to its presence. Interior Design 
      “The design of the concept places people as the focus; it should appeal to them and invite them to come in,” says Klaus Bischoff. Awaiting them there is an interior that combines the world of the automobile with the atmosphere of a lounge. Tomasz Bachorski, Head of Interior Design of the Volkswagen brand, explains the next era of interior design: “From now on, we will be networking the vehicle much more intensively to make it more interactive. The interior will become a sort of family room, a mobile place where you feel at home.” 
      As a result, the classic cockpit no longer exists in the I.D. BUZZ. In place of traditional instruments or controls is an intuitively operated cockpit consisting of:
      Touch-sensitive steering wheel (multifunction steering wheel with capacitive surfaces) Augmented reality head-up display “I.D. Box” center console (including a tablet usable outside the vehicle) In the “I.D. Pilot” mode, the front seats can be electrically unlatched and rotated so they face the rear, after the “I.D. Box” multifunctional center console is moved rearward. The seating system is flexibly designed to be like the living space at home or a lounge area. This versatility is based on a seat rail system that is integrated in the flat floor and on adjustable and folding seats. The seatbacks of the individual second row seats can be folded to form tables. At stops, the third row can be made into a bed, enabling the I.D. BUZZ to be used for overnight voyages. When the trip is resumed, clever detail solutions make travel more pleasant, such as softly padded rear side sun visors that can be moved and are designed so that a passenger can lean on them. Individually placeable cushions also underscore the cozy atmosphere of the interior, which is flooded with light thanks to its large windows and two-part panoramic roof.
      The warm interior colors are also in keeping with the lounge character. For instance, the dashpad in front of the driver and front passenger transitions from Magnet Metallic to Moon White Metallic, and the dashpad and door panel structures are illuminated by the ambient lighting as well. Stylish details include:
      Wood floor. The floor is made of fine, Silver Birch wood. The bright color underscores the cozy character of the interior. In the rear seating area, aluminum inlays in the wood take up the honeycomb pattern of the dashpad and touch-sensitive steering wheel as well as the front bumper. Door trim. The top sections of the doors are covered with sophisticated metallic leatherette. The interplay of color is underscored by the transition from the darker driver’s area to the brighter passenger zone. The designers have upgraded the lower sections of the door trim panels with a cream-colored knitted fabric throughout the rear seating area. Seat fabrics. Seats are covered in an innovative knit fabric that features a graduated honeycomb pattern. The refined knitting technique used to produce the individual diamond shapes allows a light metallic background material show through. Accentuated yellow details such as piping and seat belts showcase the fresh look of the I.D. BUZZ while creating a connection between exterior and interior. As soon as the driver’s seat is occupied, the steering wheel, which is retracted into the dashpad in parking mode, extends out, and the indicators and buttons on the steering wheel light up simultaneously. In parallel, the I.D. BUZZ activates the augmented reality head-up display and the tablet in the “I.D. Box.” The ambient lighting also greets the driver. Close the doors, buckle up, press the brake pedal and select a gear and the I.D. BUZZ is immediately ready to start. The concept car is shut off by the “P” button on the steering wheel. When finished, the steering wheel retracts flush into the cockpit panel.
      The steering wheel of the I.D. BUZZ does not have any spokes. The wheel, trimmed with Nappa leather, is more of an interactive touchpad. This touch-sensitive steering wheel is a new concept, which allows the driver to operate the drive modes (P, R, N and D), turn signals and various menu functions as well as settings for the head-up display via touch-sensitive areas on its surface. 
      The outer region of the touchpad has a honeycomb-like light signature, as does the dashpad ahead of the driver and front passenger. Pressing on the illuminated VW logo in the middle of the touch-sensitive steering wheel initiates a switch between the “Drive” mode and “I.D. Pilot” mode; the steering wheel then retracts or extends accordingly. 
      The “I.D. Box” fits the character of the I.D. BUZZ perfectly. When the vehicle is being driven by someone, the I.D. Box is positioned between the front seats. In this case, the integrated tablet in the console is positioned to serve as a display and control surface for the driver and front passenger. The I.D. Box is also equipped with loudspeakers from Beats®, which are interconnected with the passengers’ smartphones and the sound system via Bluetooth®. When the driver switches to the “I.D. Pilot” mode, the entire “I.D. Box” moves towards the rear. Other console features include cupholders and a folding table. The console tablet (like the Beats speakers) is easy to unsnap and remove from the vehicle.
      The Volkswagen I.D. lets the I.D. BUZZ know who the driver is. The individual vehicle settings are configured accordingly, and features such as the person’s calendar are shown on the tablet. The I.D. BUZZ also knows the driver’s friends via the Volkswagen I.D. Based on this information, the car might recommend meeting with friends or suggest activities that would fit into the day’s schedule. 
      In “I.D. Pilot” autonomous mode, the system informs the driver on the tablet about changes to the calendar, for instance. If the I.D. BUZZ passes one of the driver’s favorite shops or a favorite restaurant, the car informs the driver via the tablet about the current offerings at these personal points of interest. A new era of interactive and personalized online services is beginning with the I.D. BUZZ.
      Like the compact I.D., the I.D. BUZZ is equipped with an augmented reality head-up display. Information such as navigation directions are projected as virtual images from 23 to 49 feet ahead of the car. The effect is astonishingly realistic. Directions are projected via augmented reality to show exactly where the driver is heading. Thanks to the head-up display, the navigation instructions are now part of three-dimensional surroundings that the driver can experience. Drivers can use the touch-sensitive steering wheel to modify the type and amount of information shown, adapting the system to their individual needs.
      Three levels of information density are available here:
      Level 1: “Navigation,” “Speed” and “Battery indicator” Level 2: Level 1 plus “Phone” (in “Drive” mode) and “Local offerings” (in “I.D. Pilot” mode) Level 3: Levels 1 and 2 plus “Friends” along the route (in “Drive” mode) and “Messages” (in “I.D. Pilot” mode) There are no rearview mirrors in the I.D. BUZZ. Cameras and a display have taken over that function. Where there would normally be a rearview mirror, there is a screen called the e-Mirror. Here, a monitor combines data from the exterior mirror cameras on the left and right of the vehicle and from a camera that faces directly rearward. Doing away with the side mirrors improves the aerodynamics of the vehicle.
      The lighting mood of the interior also changes according to the mode. In “Drive”, illuminated elements are lit in white. When the driver activates “I.D. Pilot”, they switch over to a warm mood color. In addition, the ambient lighting and touch-sensitive steering wheel assume warning and indicator functionality. In “Drive” mode, if the driver wants to change lanes while another vehicle is alongside, a warning signal is shown on the relevant side of the dashpad. This means that the LED warning indicators for the Blind Spot Monitor, which are located in the door mirrors in today’s vehicles, migrate into the interior where they are even more obvious to the driver.
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