Volkswagen is back with a dune buggy concept, but it’s all-electric
Volkswagen is once again reaching into its past to inform the future. Following the warm reception of the I.D. Buzz concept that revived the microbus, the concept set to premiere at the 2019 Geneva show in March is a one-of-a-kind dune buggy concept.
Volkswagen is investing heavily in electric technology and, especially, a modular platform (similar to Ford) that this wild dune buggy rides on. The styling is a strong nod to the fiberglass bodies that were grafted onto Beetle floorpans a half-century ago. Key features include big wheel arches, and the lack of a top or doors creates a free and open feeling while exploring the dunes or forest
The goal of this buggy is to demonstrate the flexibility of VW’s new modular electric drive matrix (MEB) platform can be. Volkswagen stated that the MEB has the flexibility for not only large-scale production for cars like the upcoming I.D. hatchback, but it creates a path to create low-volume niche vehicles as well.
The concept takes many styling cues from the famous Meyers Manx. The fiberglass Manx was a wildly popular aftermarket body that could easily be fitted onto a shortened VW Beetle floorpan and utilize the simple flat-four engine. The Manx was so popular it was replicated in mass quantities, including some that are still in production. Volkswagen of today wants buyers to connect the simplicity of the vintage Beetle’s platform with the new MEB.
The Manx-inspired concept will be on display at the 89th International Geneva Motor Show, scheduled March 7–17 in Geneva, Switzerland. Sure seems like a cold place for a dune buggy.