Petersen Automotive Museum teams with VW to highlight the electric future
Building an Electric Future is the Petersen Automotive Museum’s newest interactive exhibit. Assembled in collaboration with Volkswagen, it shows the brand’s history of groundbreaking vehicles and its recent concepts and race vehicles that push the boundaries of hybrid and electric propulsion.
The exhibit’s opening had great timing, since it coincides with Bonnier’s display of electric motorcycles which is also on the Petersen Museum’s second floor. Building an Electric Future opened to the public this past Wednesday and is scheduled to run through November of 2022. Here are some of the highlights.
We were on hand for the ribbon cutting when Petersen Museum board members opened the exhibit at a private event on November 19.
The first two vehicles on display show some of VW’s history in the form of a 1952 Type 2 Microbus and an original Meyers Manx, “Old Red,” which was owned by the creator of the dune buggy, Bruce Meyers. Both of those vehicles inspired recent electric VW concept cars.
Powered by a Ducati 1200cc motorcycle engine, the shapely XL Sport concept proved that fuel efficiency could be fun. It’s based on the limited-production VW XL1 that normally sports a 1.0-liter engine and delivers 260 mpg with help from a hybrid system.
VW’s ID.R racer set the electric car lap record at the Nürburgring after setting the overall record at Pikes Peak using nothing but electric power. Changing atmospheric conditions and thin air at altitude don’t bother a battery or an electric motor.
The ID.Vizzion is a 2019 VW concept that uses the MEB modular electric vehicle platform that will underpin as many as 20 production cars from Volkswagen and Ford in the next six years. A production version is expected by 2022.
In addition to the Volkswagen vehicles, plenty of modern and vintage electric vehicles are on display as an expansion of the alternative propulsion exhibit the Petersen museum has featured since early 2019. New additions include the 2016 Faraday Future FFZero1 concept, the 2020 Bollinger B1 2-Door SUV prototype, and the single-seat Electrica Meccanica Solo. The Solo joins the Corbin Sparrow in the exhibit, which was its original inspiration.