Forget an Electric Beetle, Volkswagen CEO Says

Published on June 26, 2023 in Electric by Guillaume Rivard

A return of the Volkswagen Beetle as a fully electric vehicle has fueled rumours ever since the iconic German coupe/cabriolet bowed out in 2019—and even more with the automaker resurrecting the Type 2 minivan in the form of the ID. Buzz. However, all hopes are now lost, it seems.

In an interview with British publication Autocar, Volkswagen CEO Thomas Schäfer confirmed that the Beetle won’t be coming back, effectively closing a door that was once left open by its predecessor, Herbert Diess.

Popular names from the current lineup, such as the Golf and GTI, will survive in the company’s electric future, as we reported last fall. Same thing for the Tiguan. But the Beetle? That page has been turned.

Photo: Volkswagen

“There are certain vehicles that have had their day, and it wouldn't make sense to bring it back,” Schäfer told Autocar. "I wouldn't say with 100% [certainty]. But from where I stand now, I wouldn't consider it.”

The ID. Buzz is one thing, but playing up to nostalgia “would be a dead end,” the CEO further commented, adding that “you’ve got to invest money in the best possible place.”

So, if you want to see an electric Beetle, your best bet is probably the upcoming animated children’s movie Miraculous, in which the new EV concept pictured below stars alongside superhero Ladybug. 

Photo: Volkswagen

Following the ID.4 crossover and ID. Buzz minivan, Volkswagen will launch a midsize sedan called ID.7 in North America. Unveiled in a global premiere back in April, this car is due next year as a 2025 model and new VW flagship.

Standing just under five metres long, the ID.7 is about the same size as the discontinued Passat, but with a much more aerodynamic profile, a sleeker roofline and a practical rear hatch instead of a conventional trunk lid. It will be the first Volkswagen to feature the German automaker’s new display and operating concept, combining a driver-oriented, 15-inch centre touchscreen (hello, Tesla Model 3) with augmented-reality head-up display. 

Photo: Volk

At the same time, the ID.7 will be the first MEB-based model with a completely new, highly efficient drive unit. Rated at 282 horsepower and 402 lb-ft. of torque, the motor drives the rear axle. A dual-motor AWD variant will likely follow at some point, but the company made no mention of it this spring. Meanwhile, the 77kWh battery (usable capacity) is projected to deliver around 500 km of range using North American test cycles. 

As always, keep following The Car Guide for more information on future Volkswagen products.

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