Volkswagen Reveals I.D. BUZZ CARGO Electric Van With 111-kWh Battery

SEP 19 2018 BY MARK KANE 138

Volkswagen T6 Transporter returns as … I.D. BUZZ CARGO

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles prepared several electrifying new models for the 2018 IAA Commercial Vehicles in Hannover (20 to 27 September). The main concept is the all-electric I.D. BUZZ CARGO.

The I.D. BUZZ CARGO, of course, reminds us of the passenger I.D. BUZZ, but is designed for commercial purposes. It can take up to 800 kg of cargo and go over 550 km (342 miles) under WLTP cycle if fitted with the biggest 111 kWh battery. Handy is the electric socket (230 V, 16 A) for tools needed at work.

The recommended battery size for the I.D. BUZZ CARGO by the manufacturer is 48 kWh and it would enable to DC fast charging of the vehicle to 80% in 15 minutes at 150 kW of power.

Volkswagen experiments with various features in the concept – from cameras that replace mirrors, to a solar roof to wireless charging and level 4 autonomous driving.

Volkswagen I.D. BUZZ CARGO specs:

  • from 48 kWh to 111 kWh battery for ranges up to over 550 km/342 miles (WLTP)
  • Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB)
  • 150 kW electric motor (rear-wheel drive) with option for AWD
  • top speed of 160 km/h (100 mph)
  • 800 kg (1,764 lbs) of payload
  • 230 V, 16 A electric socket for tools
  • solar roof for up to 15 km of additional range a day
  • 150 kW DC fast charging (80% in half hour in case of 111 kWh battery, and 15 minutes in 48 kWh battery)
  • 11 kW on-board charger for overnight charging and 11 kW wireless charging system

Volkswagen I.D. BUZZ CARGO

Press blast

WORLD PREMIERE AT 2018 IAA COMMERCIAL VEHICLES: I.D. BUZZ CARGO BASED ON THE I.D. FAMILY

World premiere at 2018 IAA Commercial Vehicles: I.D. BUZZ CARGO based on the I.D. family provides look ahead to a new era of light commercial vehicles

  • I.D. BUZZ CARGO has the potential to write history as one of the most advanced transporters
  • Spacious electric transporter concept vehicle based on the Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB)
  • With the biggest battery the MEB makes ranges of over 550 km (WLTP) possible
  • Digital cargo system connects cockpit and cargo space and brings superfast “Internet of things” on board
  • In “I.D. Pilot” mode the I.D. BUZZ CARGO concept vehicle drives using full automation (level 4) to its
    next place of use
  • 230V socket provides workers’ tools with power
    for hours with no additional generator
  • A large solar roof extends the daily range of the I.D. BUZZ CARGO by up to 15 km

Hannover, 19 September 2018 – It is the most familiar of all transporters: the Bulli. Now, with the world premiere of the new I.D. BUZZ CARGO, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is showing how an electrically powered and completely redeveloped Bulli might enrich the range of transporters. And as a supplementary model to the best-selling “T6”. The most innovative zero-emission transporter of our time could be launched into the market as early as 2021. Meanwhile, the concept vehicle offers a glimpse into the middle of the next decade with its alternative, fully-automated “I.D. Pilot” driving mode (level 4).

The transporter concept being presented at the IAA Commercial Vehicles in Hannover (20 to 27 September) is a progressive sibling of the I.D. BUZZ. That concept, which was presented in 2017 in Detroit, enthused people around the globe and will go into production starting in 2022. The new I.D. BUZZ CARGO was designed to be just as close to production level. The I.D. BUZZ was developed jointly by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles and Volkswagen Passenger Cars. Volkswagen Passenger Cars focused on the van (people carrier) and Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles on the cargo version. Both models are members of the I.D. Family – a new generation of fully connected electric vehicles delivering the ranges of today’s petrol vehicles, a progressive design-DNA and impressive space. Another key unique selling point of the I.D. Family is the scalability of its batteries. The models can be delivered with different battery sizes according to the vehicles purpose of use and budget. And this applies also to the future I.D. BUZZ CARGO, which like all models in the I.D. Family is based on the Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB). With the MEB it is possible – dependent on battery size and the model concerned – to achieve ranges of about 330 to over 500 km (as per WLTP).

Era of electric mobility begins
This concept vehicle shows how Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is launching into the new era of electric mobility. Back in August, the company already presented the brand’s first all-electric van with the world premiere of the new e-Crafter. While the e-Crafter launched as a panel van with an overall length of 5,986 mm and a maximum payload of 1.75 tonnes, the I.D. BUZZ CARGO concept is positioned in the size class beneath the Crafter. The payload (maximum load) of the concept vehicle is 800 kg; the I.D. BUZZ CARGO is 5,048 mm long, 1,976 mm wide and 1,963 mm tall. Its wheelbase measures 3,300 mm. By the way, the rear overhang was extended by 106 mm, making the cargo version of the I.D. BUZZ significantly longer than the van shown in Detroit.

Transporter’s exterior differs from that of the van
Outside, the I.D. BUZZ CARGO concept is differentiated from the people carrying version by a new solar roof, wide-opening rear wing doors and a new rear bumper. With a view towards optimising utilisation of the cargo space with shelving systems, there is no sliding door on the driver’s side – and this is typical of transporters. The front doors and sliding door open electrically. Unlocking the vehicle from the outside is activated via a sensor solution. The I.D. BUZZ CARGO recognises authorised persons via a digital key which is sent to the van from a smartphone. Instead of the 22-inch wheels of the Detroit concept vehicle, new 20-inch wheels are used with size 235/55 tyres. With these specifications, the I.D. BUZZ CARGO meets the requirements of a utility-oriented transporter – but in this case with a progressive type of design.

The solar module on the roof fits into this picture. The photovoltaic system generates so much energy that it is able to extend the range of the I.D. BUZZ CARGO by up to 15 km a day. So the longer the concept vehicle stands in the sun, the further it can drive later.

Interior with three seats in the front and computer workstation
The interior has also been tailored for commercial use – down to the smallest detail. From the driver’s cab to the rear, the I.D. BUZZ CARGO exhibits an entirely independent concept. Instead of two single seats, the concept vehicle is equipped with the driver’s seat and a double bench-seat on the front passenger side – a typical commercial vehicle solution. The middle seat can be folded down. This opens up a workplace, at which the driver can take care of organisational matters via an integrated laptop. In the automated “I.D. Pilot” mode this can even be done on the move. The driver activates the autonomous mode at level 4 of the corresponding VDA classification (VDA = German Automotive Industry Association) by simply pushing on the steering wheel for a few seconds. It then retracts into the redesigned instrument panel. Thereafter the driver’s seat can be turned 15 degrees to the right in order to enable the on-board computer to be operated from the ideal ergonomic position.

There is no cockpit in the conventional sense in the I.D. BUZZ CARGO. Instead, key information is projected onto the road in 3D via its AR head-up display. This positions the information precisely in the driver’s line-of-sight, allowing the driver to concentrate fully on road traffic. AR stands for augmented reality, a technology that shows electronically generated images in real space. Other information is displayed on a tablet; features such as infotainment and climate control functions are also operated via this portable tablet. The main controls for driving, meanwhile, are located on the steering wheel. Its inner section is not fitted with spokes and buttons – as is normal today – rather it has a touchpad with a variety of fields. The conventional steering wheel becomes a multifunctional steering wheel. Rear view mirrors are also a thing of the past in the I.D. BUZZ CARGO, with cameras projecting images onto small screens in the cab. Some elements are not changes: like in the T6 Transporter, there are numerous storage options in the dash panel, because the I.D. BUZZ CARGO was primarily designed to simplify working in the vehicle.

“Internet of Things” will now be on-board in the cargo space
The cargo compartment begins behind the first seat row and a bulkhead. Like the rest of the transporter, it was “re-thought”. Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is bringing the “Internet of Things” on board in this van. In cooperation with the German equipment specialist Sortimo, a new shelving system has been developed for the cargo area and fitted with sensors and a lighting system. This shelving system is connected to the intelligent I.D. BUZZ CARGO via a customer-specific function control unit and a CAN interface. The data is transferred by WLAN to tablets in the cargo space and cockpit. By means of a mobile radio network, the functional control unit might communicate with a company’s job or order management system, theoretically making it possible to track all articles on the shelves. This enables precise online management of the type and quantity of freight and equipment in the zero-emission Bulli. Further data is provided by the already available ConnectedVan fleet management system.

During autonomous driving it is possible to accept, schedule and process orders from the driver’s workplace. Thanks to the connected shelving system’s data it is also possible to perform order-related stock checks while on the move. Quick taking of orders is made possible in the I.D. BUZZ CARGO through a flexible procurement planning system. It is also possible to perform optimum, flexible route planning taking customer appointments into account. Meanwhile the Pick-by-Light function, for example, illuminates the position on the shelf of any tool being searched for so that it can be found faster. Thanks to the Safety Check function any unsecured tools or missing parts are indicated before the start of the journey. Last but not least, any components taken out get automatically registered, working times recorded and invoices issued. A large light (0.8 m2) integrated in the roof makes access to the items even easier and quicker

The new shelving concept has been thought through in minute detail and yet is surprisingly simple in its construction: the entire system can be adapted individually to the cargo compartment of the I.D. BUZZ CARGO, enabling optimal space utilisation. This is why the I.D. BUZZ CARGO concept has “only” one sliding door on the passenger side; the space on the opposite wall of the load compartment is needed as a storage area and for shelving systems like the Sortimo.

High-volume space with a small turning circle
Like all members of the I.D. Family, the I.D. BUZZ CARGO is characterised by an exceptionally large interior, with its innovative package enabled by the MEB. The battery is integrated into the vehicle floor, lowering the vehicle’s centre of gravity and significantly improving handling. The transporter’s axles have been shifted outwards, because no space is required for a combustion engine at the front, and the compact electric motor with its gearbox is mounted on the rear axle. This creates additional space (up to 0.2 m3) in the front of the concept vehicle. The electric motor drives the multilink rear axle. As an alternative, an electric all-wheel drive version with improved traction and performance can be implemented – as in the van. A rear axle steering system from the Detroit concept van was also adapted to the I.D. BUZZ CARGO; in conjunction with the large turn-in angle of the front wheels, this results in an extremely small turning circle of less than 10.0 metres – ideal for manoeuvring in the city.

I.D. BUZZ CARGO as mobile workshop
Driving up to loading ramps is made easier by the wide-opening, symmetrical rear wing doors. When the wing doors are opened, a workbench can be folded out. Even high-performance work tools can be supplied with power there from 230V electrical sockets (16A) via the battery. This has been implemented to ensure that the I.D. BUZZ CARGO is not just a means of transportation, but also a standalone mobile workshop.

The zero-emission drive in detail
The electric drive of the I.D. BUZZ CARGO consists mainly of the electric motor with power electronics and 1-speed gearbox integrated into the driven rear axle, the lithium-ion battery and auxiliary units integrated in the front body. The flow of high-voltage energy between the motor and the battery is controlled by the power electronics. Here, the direct current (DC) stored in the battery is converted into alternating current (AC). A DC/DC converter supplies the on-board electronics with 12 volts. As noted, it is possible to equip the I.D. BUZZ CARGO with different size batteries according to the vehicle’s use profile. If the transporter covers fairly normal distances in the city on a daily and weekly basis, a lithium-ion battery with an energy capacity of 48 kWh is recommended. If greater range is needed, the energy capacity can be increased up to 111 kWh.

Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has combined the battery in the I.D. BUZZ CARGO being presented in Hannover with a 150 kW electric motor. The vehicle’s top speed is electronically limited to 160 km/h. As mentioned above, an all-wheel drive system like the one implemented in its sibling model is just as conceivable.

The battery is generally charged overnight at a vehicle depot
The high-voltage battery of the I.D. BUZZ CARGO is charged by cable connection. Using fast charging systems operating at 150 kW direct current, the 48-kWh battery can be charged to 80 per cent capacity in 15 minutes; for the largest battery expansion stage with an energy capacity of 111 kW it takes 30 minutes. As an alternative, the high-voltage battery can be charged from any conventional household socket, charging stations with a wide variety of power outputs or wallboxes. Although the Bulli can be charged at 2.3 kW via a normal 230V mains, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles offers wallboxes that operate at much higher power levels up to 11 kW. They are especially advisable for charging batteries to 100 per cent at a company’s vehicle depot overnight (when electricity prices are often lower).

The battery system of the future production version has also been prepared for inductive charging, likewise with 11 kW of charging power. The concept vehicle has this technology already. In this case, the van is positioned – via electronic control – over a “charging plate” during parking. As soon as the control unit of the charging plate in the pavement has set up a communications channel with the vehicle, contactless energy can be transferred through an electromagnetic field generated between two coils (one in the floor of the parking space and one in the vehicle).

Design of a 21st century icon
There is no other van in the world today with a design which is nearly as familiar, successful or unique as that of the Bulli. Over seven decades and six vehicle generations, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has refined and sharpened its design, continually reinventing it while never losing sight of the DNA of the model series. With the debuts of the I.D. BUZZ and I.D. BUZZ CARGO, the upcoming decade will see the advent of another series of all-round vehicles to supplement the “T6” – the Transporter, Caravelle, Multivan and California. This series will project the design of the original transporter into the future. It signifies a new, strong branch on the tree of an automotive icon.

What defines the design of the I.D. BUZZ CARGO is the interplay of familiar and new elements of the Bulli DNA. The front end, in particular, with a characteristic “V” and a typically friendly “face” clearly reflects a Bulli – yet it is a completely new interpretation. Instead of the round headlights of the original model, the I.D. BUZZ CARGO has interactive LED systems, which not only turn night into day, but also communicate interactively with pedestrians – like eyes. Another style-defining feature is the short front body overhang. Just as style-defining is the roofline with its charismatic front extension over the windscreen, although each detail has been re-interpreted and implemented.

When it is dark outside, this creates a unique night design with the backlit VW logo on the front of the vehicle and the LED daytime running lights in the headlights and front bumper. The I.D. BUZZ CARGO is also unmistakable from the back. Here, it is the slender LED lights and large painted surfaces that typify the iconic design.

1) Note: The vehicle has not yet gone on sale and therefore Directive 1999/94 EC does not apply.

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138 Comments on "Volkswagen Reveals I.D. BUZZ CARGO Electric Van With 111-kWh Battery"

newest oldest most voted
Olivier

80% of 111 kWh in 30 minutes with 150 kW is impossible. Even if only 100 kWh is usable, you need an AVERAGE of 160 kW to get to 80% in 30 minutes.

dan

If you start at a battery level of zero, that means that you were stuck on the side of the road and had to be towed. These numbers usually assume 5%-80%.

Bill Howland

Olivier’s point still stands – no one proof-read the press release. You still cannot get 83.25 Kwh of energy from 75 kwh of juice even assuming everything is 100% efficient, which it is not.

Vexar

Bah, math. Such frivolities do not apply to VW vehicle announcements. And people say the Tesla Semi defies the laws of physics!

zzzzzzzzzz

Actually the math is just fine if you go into details. Or put it otherwise, you don’t have enough details to disprove it.
First, you don’t know voltage. You may assume 400 V, but it may be all they way up to 500 V.

Then these “150 kW” tagged chargers actually may be 375 A or 500 A (375 A * 400 V= 150kW).
The charging requires 111 kWh * 80% / 30/60 h = 177.6 kW. You would need 473 V @ 375 A or 355 V @ 500 A which is within limits of e.g. ABB Terra HP charger.

https://library.e.abb.com/public/6b98dedd5348496fbe1fb82028f22e5f/4EVC700702-LFEN_TerraHP_3_18_web.pdf

Pushmi-Pullyu

Clearly you don’t understand what a “watt” is. It’s a unit of power, not energy. It doesn’t matter what the voltage is. You only need to multiply kW by the number of hours to get kWh. Voltage isn’t part of the equation.

Oliver and Bill are entirely correct: The claim of 80% of 111 kWh in 30 minutes using a 150 kW power source is impossible. 150 kW for 30 minutes (1/2 hour) is 75 kWh, even if we ignore real-world losses for resistance and charger inefficiency. Contrast to 80% of 111 kWh, which would be 88.8 kWh.

Even if the car started with a 10% charge (which would be typical for a charging session), a 1/2 hour charge would only get it up to 86.1 kWh… and again that’s assuming 100% charging efficiency, which in the real world is impossible.

Pushmi-Pullyu

LOL!
😆 😆 😆

Quite true; VW’s endless stream of vaporware pronouncements about EVs seem entirely unconstrained by reality.

Terawatt

It’s even worse, actually. A “150 kW” charger in practice never delivers they much power. The chargers are current-limited, and the rated power is only achieved at the highest voltage. But then the car is at high state of charge and can’t take it. At 3.2V per cell you only get about 80% of rated power (if you can take it), because the voltage is only about 80% of the maximum.

So when Bjørn Nyland wanted to test the maximum charging speed of Kona, he needed a charger rated 175 kW based on the hypothesis the car could take up to 100 kW. We now know 71 kW is closer to the real maximum, which a 100 kW and certainly a 150 kW charger can supply even at the low end of the SoC scale.

Nono13

Fastened already delivered 175 kW chargers in Europe. They have no problem to charge at 150 kW. And they were design to be upgraded to 350 kW.

Terawatt

They state 0-80%. And this number is clearly silly.

Frankly I don’t trust the 15 minutes to 80% figure either. The charger could deliver it, but 3.2C average speed up to 80% SoC seems to be mere wishful thinking. Maybe the solid state batteries will have it eventually, but today’s high-energy-density chemistries definitely don’t like 3C kind of speeds.

Jason

They don’t tell you what it will do to the SoH! Like Nissan, you should only do 1 DC charge per day, in VW case only do it once per week.
Battery warranty, 1yr or 10,000mi, whichever comes first 🙂

wavelet

I suspect this isn’t 0-80%, but more like 15% to 80% . Either way, specs should be fully detailed.

amt

These Guys with all there Vaporware are trying to Blow Smoke Up 0ur Butts ….

KumarPlocher

VW is particularly vaporous.

Pushmi-Pullyu

Yes, VW is undisputed King of Vaporware when it comes to EVs. I see they’re not slackening the pace, either.

eject

This is cherry picked info from all the individual variants. You probably can charge the smallest battery in 30min but it will only take 80kW while the largest one can take 150kW but will take 50 minutes to be charged to 80%

Doggydogworld

They say the smallest (48 kWh) can charge 80% in 15 minutes. That’s also untrue, but just barely.

It’s a Concept Car with conceptual charging rates.

Terawatt

I think it’s not just barely. It implies 3.2C rate on average. 1C is rather more typical. And since the smaller pack needs more cycles for the same mileage, it’s rather more important to be conservative with that.

Christian

I would not be surprised if they “theoretically” calculate all the input ports..
Like 11 kw AC + 150 KW .. that makes up for the difference and loses :).

It’s a concept.. you can bend reality as you want.. that’s why VW likes so much the press-game.

If their investments department would be half the size of the PR department they would have been a lot better now 🙂

Terawatt

But 161 kW * 0,5h = 80,5 kWh which is still not half of 111 kWh. So it still doesn’t add up.

(Also, CCS of course occupies the type 2 connector when fast charging, so there is no way to even connect both AC and DC chargers at once. You said “purely theoretical” tho, so let that slide.)

Wen

so 35.52 mins, not 30.

Jopp

So its 32 minutes. Wow…. Such a big difference.
Everbody would say that it takes half an hour, if something takes 32minutes.

Pushmi-Pullyu

Not really; that assumes 100% charging efficiency. In reality, it would be closer to 85%, so add ~18% to the theoretical time.

But hey, this is just a virtual concept car, so they can claim anything for it that their advertising department feels like. No problem handwaving away thermodynamic limits or the laws of physics! 😉

hpver

So their first remake of the iconic VW microbus is a . . . . . *cargo* van!??? If this doesn’t illustrate just how much VW doesn’t get it when it comes to optics and what people want, I don’t know what will. Geez. Make an updated passenger microbus already.

Shneepis

They sell sh*tloads of VW cargovans in Europe, probably more than family-multivans.

Andy

Of which a significant proportion are converted into Campers. The Transporter is pretty much the Camper of choice in Europe.

John Doe

According to sales, most campers in Europe are based on FIAT Ducato chassis. There are about 500 000 motorhomes based on the Ducato.
The Transporter is in general considered too small for a camper/motorhome. Depending on your needs of course.

Andy

I think we’re confusing what I mean by campers here. I’m talking about things like this: https://www.volkswagen-vans.co.uk/en/models/california.html

Not the big cabover style designs with fibreglass and composite sides. (like this http://www.motorhomeandrvhire.com/camper_rent/camper_iceland/vehicle_information/mh5_fiat_ducato.shtml)

The VW Transporter (or more precisely the T5/6) is the modern version of the classic VW Camper (T1/2 Transporter) the design the vehicle in this article is based on.

eject

This is where the roots of the VW Bulli come from. Building it for leisure came much later. Also I think you are dead wrong. They got the design 100% right. I hope they make them like that as cargo vans and work vehicles. Also they have to make one with a open bed in the same style as well. Both with single and double cabin.
http://up.picr.de/33863162ug.jpg
http://up.picr.de/33863183ai.jpg
They could sell in the millions over the next decades.

hpver

I like the design. I just don’t think pushing a cargo version first is a goo idea.

eject

Why? The market for commercial vans is larger and making them is easier. Anyways, I would expect them to be introduced at about the same time since they are going to be made on the same line.

Terawatt

Where do you see anything about the cargo version being “pushed first”? They’ve shown concepts of the Buzz a long time. This was a utility vehicle fare, hence the cargo version was on display. Don’t jump immediately to conclusions.

Cypress

It is a concept. No announcement on timing (least not that I saw in the article). They already released the concept for the passenger van first. I think it is great they are showing different variants and possibilities.

Terawatt

We had the pickup version when I was a kid. Only while my parents were building our new home, but I remember it quite fondly.

Doggydogworld

This isn’t the first. They’ve been showing BEV Microbus concepts for years.

VW has a strong leadership position in EV Concept Cars.

hpver

Yeah, a concept. This is more than that. Point is they advanced the cargo van before any more passenger-oriented version.

Doggydogworld

This is still a concept. It’s about a year behind the passenger version. Last year VW said they’d produce the passenger version in 2022. They have not said they will produce this cargo version.

They say it “could be launched into the market as early as 2021”. IMHO “launched” means announced with full production specs so they can start taking commercial orders. Series production would presumably happen at the same time or 6-12 months behind the passenger bus.

Cypress

No. They did the passenger concept first.

Pushmi-Pullyu

“Yeah, a concept. This is more than that.”

No, the article very clearly says it’s a concept. Beside, the pictures are obviously just computer renders, not photos of an actual passenger vehicle. That should have been a hint!

Foersom

IAA Hannover is an exhibition for utility vehicles. So of course VW exhibit the version for cargo transport and work van.

HVACman

VW Group must have some secret new-tech battery chemistry and battery cooling system. The Porsche Taycan supposedly will be able to charge a 100 kWh battery at 350 kW peak charge rate and this new ID 48 kWh battery will charge to 80% in 15 minutes. That is a 3.5 C charging rate – double the speed anything else out there. The Audi etron will be 1.55 C. The model 3 LR appears to be about 1.6 C.

antrik

This is nothing out of the ordinary for batteries used in PHEVs today. There is no secret there — just different trade-offs.

antrik

What’s more, from what I can gather from the available pictures and official description, the e-Tron indeed seems to have the *most primitive* of all liquid cooling systems out there…

It would seem the cooling is not actually such a big deal.

Link

Isn’t this one of the advantages of pouch cells compared to cylindricals, easier cooling?

antrik

Cooling pouch cells is actually more involved.

In theory, you can do it very effectively by cooling the contact tabs — but that’s tricky to do in terms of pack design. Surface cooling is less effective: although the flat surface to pick up the heat from is large, to get to the surface in the first place, the heat first has to travel trough all the individual layers *within* the cell. What’s more, doing it that way is also somewhat involved, since you need to put cooling plates between the cells in the stack. Otherwise, you can only cool the narrow edge of the cells… Surprisingly, that *seems* to be what Audi is doing. I would have thought that the heat transfer trough the edge wouldn’t be good enough — but apparently it’s sufficient?

Cooling cylindrical cells is much easier, because one of the electrodes is attached directly to the can, and the metallic can conducts heat very well — so your cooling system essentially just needs to pick up the heat from any part of the can…

Pushmi-Pullyu

No, it’s the reverse. Cooling is easier for cylindrical cells, held firmly in place in their rigid metal “cans”, than for soft-sided pouch cells. The cooling system Tesla uses in its battery packs is much simpler, with far fewer parts, and very likely much less expensive, than the system GM uses in its Volt and Bolt EV battery packs.

But hey, this is only a virtual concept car. They gave it a mathematically impossible charging rate; they can just as easily give its battery cooling system a cooling rate which fearlessly defies the laws of physics!
🙂

Terawatt

But batteries used in PHEVs have a completely different optimization problem to solve. They have higher power density, better cycle life, and used to be cheaper per kWh capacity – but with much lower energy density gravimetrically and volumetrically, which is a price you don’t want to pay in a BEV.

VW has been alone in the strategy of using the same cells in both their hybrids and BEVs. Everyone else have chosen different cells. No doubt this has given VW some cost benefits, but those diminish when the volume of BEV and PHEV cells bought our year becomes much larger.

I don’t believe the 111 kWh pack is possible today with the PHEV cells. It could be that VW chooses to state their targets (none of this is binding of course!) based on the mere hope that solid state comes through in time. Or even just expected performance gains from more conventional BEV cells.

antrik

Why would the higher power / lower energy PHEV cells be cheaper per kWh? In my understanding, they should actually be slightly more expensive…

I’m not saying VW is using actual PHEV cells, though. In fact I’m not sure they are doing that even in the e-Golf — CATL for example, along with actual PHEV-optimised cells, also offers explicitly BEV-optimised cells in VW’s currently preferred “PHEV2” cell format… I suspect the e-Golf is using something like that.

My actual point was that achieving a C rate of 3.5 is nothing special, depending on what trade-offs you are willing to take.

Pushmi-Pullyu

Do any of today’s production BEVs use a C-rate as high as 3.5? That looks more like a PHEV C-rate to me, but I could be wrong.

antrik

Not sure… But the IONIQ is not far behind; and the Spark supposedly was in that range also. As I said, it’s a matter of trade-offs chosen, not technical possibilities.

Christian

It’s probably a parallel configuration.
If split in 2 parallel packs (so 800V system) then each one does 1.5 C but in total they do 3C.

Tesla can also do it.. but it requires 800V chargers. None are around yet.

antrik

The C-rate is independent of the pack voltage or configuration. The voltage of the cells is always the same.

alohart

Independent of the pack configuration?!

Consider 2 battery packs of 1 Ah cells. Battery pack A has 10 cells in series while pack B has 2 10-cell strings connected in parallel. The output voltage of both is the same but the capacity of pack B is twice that of pack A. A 1C charging rate for pack A would be 1 A of charging current while a 1C charging rate for pack B would be 2 A of charging current, 1 A through each cell string. So for the same charging current, the C rate of pack A would be double that of pack B, but the C rate of each cell would be identical. Thus, the pack C rate depends on the pack configuration.

antrik

If you use the same total current for your pack B, the current through each cell would only be half that of pack A.

Vexar

Ah, like how the Tesla Semi charges with a series of supercharger cables all at once. For those times when you’re on the Autobahn and need to stop to charge, but you’re in such a bloody hurry that you need to use two chargers at the same time.

Terawatt

You clearly don’t understand electronics. Putting cells in parallel don’t allow you to charge them any faster. It just lowers the voltage the charger supplies – and increases the current correspondingly. And since current is the greater problem (cost) that’s exactly the opposite of what you want.

When Porsche chose 350 kW charging, how did they achieve it? By raising the nominal pack voltage to 800V. Hence the same current that on 400V can deliver 175 kW is able to deliver 350 kW.

Smart move that makes 350 kW chargers cost little more than those delivering only half. But only useful if you have somewhere near 200 cells in series (96 cells is kind of a de facto standard for battery packs today).

And in no way does it alter the slightest how fast each cell can charge. All the cells charge at the same time, whether in series or in parallel, and it takes as long to charge one cell as it does to charge the whole pack.

antrik

96 cells in series is not exactly de-facto standard… While it’s true for many vehicles (various Teslas; Bolt; Leaf; i3), other variants also exist. I-Pace has 95. e-Tron has 108. (Some others too, though I don’t remember which…) IIRC one has 100.

But yeah, it’s all in the same ballpark, for ~350 – ~400 V.

AIUI, the main issue with increasing the amperage (beside thicker wiring) is that it requires higher contact forces, to the point that plugging in would become too hard for some people…

foersom

“I-Pace has 95”

No, Jaguar I-Pace has 108S4P = 432 cells like Audi E-Tron.

antrik

Indeed — must have it confused with something else… There is definitely one of the recent or upcoming EVs though using the unusual count of 95 in series. (15 modules of six groups each IIRC.)

antrik

Err, obviously not 15 x 6… Don’t remember what the actual configuration was any more. But I’m still pretty sure it was 95 total 😉

Alex

I’ve been doing lots of stuff with batteries – small scale.
It’s not hard to find liion batteries that accept up to 5C (5 times the power of their rated 1 hour capacity). In a 100kWh package that’s 500kW!
While in a packet it’s much harder to dissipate heat compared to a single cell, I don’t see why a 100kWh battery pack can’t reach 200, 300 or more KW of charging.

alohart

Dissipating heat isn’t the only problem. The speed of the electrochemical reactions in the cell has an upper limit. Also, ions can migrate from one electrode to the other only so fast. If one charges too fast, destructive irreversible reactions occur which degrade the battery cell.

antrik

Yes, that’s why not all cells can achieve higher C-rates. His point however was that cells with higher C-rates are readily available — so when you use these, cooling becomes the major limiting factor. (Along with wiring, and of course charger capabilities…)

John Doe

I wouldn’t trust information from marketing people, as they’re usually as non technical as sales people..
When the product is more ready for production, and specs are final – we can trust the numbers.
The marketing people have probably just found numbers and copy and pasted them. Not knowing the real facts about them.
When the facts are printed on a sales page, and they are liable for the information, it will be correct. Until then..

Bill Howland
Agreed with Olivier that VW cannot even get accurate information into their press releases – seeing as the charging rates and charging times are contradictory. Another thing is, the original Microbus had 1000 kg of load capacity – at this rather late date this only has 800. VW sold plenty of the 53-58 horsepower original Microbuses, and the older 1960’s versions, if still in reasonable condition, go for over $100,000 in the states – that’s how popular they were and still are. With not much heat, and 6 volt electrical systems, no less. They STILL seem worried about the IoT (Internet of Things), and having plenty of horsepower, when many people just want a nice electric mini-bus. To make the thing smaller than the original very space efficient vehicle is their first mistake. If they load the thing up with techno-crap and don’t keep the selling price down, the car will be more of a failure than a success – but then having either 48 or 111 kwh is the only decent decision to these eyes. Now me, I wouldn’t care that much about CCS charging or a super high home charging rate – so if they lowered the price… Read more »
Andy

1000kg >800kg is probably to do with the weight of the battery unfortunately. For the European market if they go over 3,500kg gross vehicle weight (MAM) then people need to take an additional driving test to drive it, basically killing any demand.

viriato

Recently, at least in Spain the traffic authority (DGT) rised the MAM to 4250 kg for electric vans to compensate the weight of batteries. Probably in the rest of Europe be the same.

Here the link (in spanish):
http://www.europapress.es/sociedad/noticia-dgt-autorizara-conduccion-vehiculos-ecologicos-4250-kilos-permiso-20180503175129.html

Andy

Interesting. I guess vehicle weights won’t go up until the all the major markets change, but it’s certainly a way around the issue and should lead to longer EV ranges.

antrik

I wouldn’t be surprised to see the same vehicle getting homologised with higher load capacities in markets that allow for the higher gross weight, with little or no changes otherwise…

Andy

Agreed, most load and tow ratings are not based on actual capacity, rather legislative and commercially based. Still, you build for your biggest/majority of markets to get the most sales.

antrik

You say yourself that used ones go for insane prices — so why would they want to make the new one as cheap as possible? It’s a lifestyle product, typically coming at a hefty premium.

Bill Howland

I’m saying the VW of old did things RIGHT….They had practical, reliable vehicles that none of the BIG 3 (or 4) USA automakers understood – and they just laughed them all off.

Who would think of the appeal of a car basically designed in the early 1930’s that had features that US Car executives laughed themselves silly about: (Jay Leno tested a very early beetle and said it was essentially the same product with the same feel and ‘sound’ as cars made decades later).

1). Running Boards.

2). Simple, no frills operation.

3). Engine driven car ventilation.

4). Spare tire operated windshield washer.

5). 6 Volt Electrical Systems.

6) (the real knee slapper) – 25, 30, 36, or 40 hp engines for the beetle. 53-58 horsepower engines for the microbus.

Laughing until they saw sales figures…. Americans couldn’t get enough of them, Since they were RELIABLE, WELL-BUILT vehicles. (A Beetle would float for 1/2 hour back when an american car would immediately sink.)

Vexar

I saw the excessive reference to IoT as the equivalent of cloud-washing if you know that term. I expect the average carpenter or plumber looking for a BEV work truck is going to care a lot more about AC outlets in the vehicle than IoT. Maybe Amazon.EU cares, but the guy delivering your new washer-dryer combo probably has a clipboard and a pen for you to sign with.

Andy

People still use clipboards? I don’t think I’ve had a delivery in years that I’ve had to sign a bit of paper – it’s all electronic PDA’s.

John Doe

Yeah.. it’s been digital for years – so the packages can be tracked better.

Cypress

Leave electronic personal displays of affection (PDA) to tumblr.

Cypress

When the furniture store brought my sofa, it was signed for on a clipboard and paper. And my dishwasher.

antrik

Yeah, the mention of IoT is obviously just some meaningless buzzword dropping, which is virtually obligatory for concept vehicles… I generally just ignore that stuff, and look at the actual specs.

Adoreizi

Solar roof option is awesome. They claim about 9 miles a day, which adds up over the life of the vehicle. Every EV should have this option. Solar and batteries are the way of the resilient future.

antrik

In most situations, it’s way more efficient to put the panels on a stationary roof, and just charge from there.

I can see an integrated panel being convenient for camping — but for the cargo variant, it seems a strange choice…

Vexar

No, it’s for the “prepper” crowd. I thought that was obvious.

Andy

Agreed. For travel it’s useless, but an integrated solar system would be great for the camper conversions.

antrik

Isn’t this vehicle rather too small for a camper conversion?…

Andy

For middle aged Americans perhaps, but for many Europeans and younger Americans (think surfers) it’s the perfect size and its ICE equivalents are iconic – for example the original 1970’s VW Camper so synonymous with the Hippy generation. The current Transporter T5/6 (the modern version) is also extremely popular (and expensive).

https://www.volkswagen-vans.co.uk/en/models/california.html

Cypress

Fine if parked at the campground for a week though.

Dan F.

That’s probably 9 miles on a clear summer day at 20 degrees North or South. Mostly cloudy day in northern Europe maybe 1-2 miles. Also not good for cargo or ladder racks. This idea has been kicked around for a long time but not implemented presumably because it is not remotely cost effective.

VW sold a Eurovan in the US in the 1990s into the early 2000s but couldn’t sell it for enough to make money. These will be expensive and only the micro-bus version will find a market in the US. The ideal vehicle for rich surfers.

Love the vehicle for all the reasons I don’t love modern minivans. It is tall, boxy and has short overhangs front and rear; it IS a micro-bus.

John

I’d buy that thing all day long.

scott

You can purchase one as soon as never depending on your location.

John

Unfortunately that’s likely the truth.

William

“All day long”, like a stack of pancakes, demand will outstrip supply, that is until they start to manufacture it.

Bill Howland

Oh, THIS one they are actually going to make? I thought the earlier one with the Stock Broker’s Dashboard (4 video screens) that had the feature , per VW spokesmen: “You can adjust the temperature of your refrigerator”, a feature I never need since my 3 freezers or refrigerator/freezers are all the cost reduced models with non-electronic, non-internet thermostats, and I haven’t touched the setting since I bought any of them since the temperatures in the refrigerators and freezers are always absolutely perfect anyway.

The old Stockbroker version had, as I recall, a 50 mile range battery and a 25 mph top speed.

It is nice that the VW can even manage those TOUGH Neighborhood Electric Vehicle (NEV) technical breakthroughs.

eject

I don’t agree with the flat rear. I think it should be curved even if a flat rear is more aerodynamic style is important as well and this thing has a lot of style.

Mark.ca

Is this model 301?

William

Now your counting is just over the top!

Mark.ca

I’m just trying to keep up….a little lost and confused….

Dan F.

Flat rear is LESS aerodynamic, look at an airplane, more tapered in back than front.

John Doe

Easier to load pallets of goods with a forklift.

eject

If only the doors are curved that doesn’t matter. They fold out of the way when opened.

scott

Available never.

John Doe

Just hope they make a longer one too, like they have done with the Transporter vehicles before. More storage room for the passenger version.

Peter

You can make a longer model in Photoshop, just like how this short model was made.

Pushmi-Pullyu

Indeed.

I think it was a couple of years ago that an IEVs article noted that VW had more than a dozen times issued press releases stating that the I.D. “Buzz” was going to be put into production.

Just how many times has this little boy cried “Wolf!”, and why should any rational person still believe him?

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous
Kosh

This is going to be VERY popular in Europe (and maybe even the U.S.) if fitted with Festool systainer racks for the tradesman (rough and finish carpentry, etc).

Bob Wilson

More vaporware. The local VW dealer doesn’t have a charger to lock up at night and Sundays. The nearest VW station in Manchester TN had only 1 of 4 working chargers.

Bill Howland

My VW dealership took an ‘Occasional Use Cord’ (the 1400 watt ‘charging brick’) from the trunk of a car, and put it in the fanciest SHOE BOX you’ve ever seen, and showed customers how to charge their vehicle.

Unfortunately, the only 115 volt receptacle was INSIDE the showroom, and had none available for use OUTSIDE where a car might be.

The Porsche dealership down the road has TWO GARGANTUAN docking stations, which may be adjusted by the public to be either 1400 watts or 700 watts. But then Porsche is a Premium Product and its understandable why they would have such SUPERFAST charging facilities at their dealerships.

Alex

would cost over 60000$ the Problem with vw its too expensive

Andy

The current ICE are eye wateringly expensive already, so not much different there.

Kdawg

I’ve never been a fan of VW cars in the past, but really like the looks of the ID Buzz concepts, both van and car.

Vexar

Is there money in making implausible press releases full of numeric inaccuracies, trend references, and a 3D model of a car that will likely never leave the laptop?

William

You mean like “numeric inaccuracies” that are tweeted by a certain CEO, referencing the comment “funding secured”, surrounding a potential $420.00 private equity corporate takeover?

Pushmi-Pullyu

Do you often suffer from this compulsion to hijack a discussion thread?

Kdawg

Vexar, I dunno, I just like the looks. Whoever’s designing the EVs, going in this direction is OK by me, vs whatever BMW was showing the other day. Enough w/the clunky-chunky stuff. Instead K.I.S.S.

Pushmi-Pullyu

There must be somebody at VW making a good salary on that; they’re certainly keeping him (or them) busy with their high volume of vaporware!

Gabriel

I would never buy such a car, not because of the specs, but because it will never be on sale. The specs otherwise are really cool and I would be dying to get one.

Dan F.

I bet they bring the passenger version to the U.S. but it WILL be expensive.

Frank

Just idiots support this cheater by buying there crap

Rr

Uff annoying communication!! t6 first and not with meb? California only with t6? Awd only with budd e? Battery choices only with budde? Ahhh just let us kbow what the plans are!!!

Speculawyer

“production starting in 2022”

That is literally 4 years away. It is hard to take such announcements seriously and they seem like just FUD.

antrik

FUD? It’s a product announcement. Why would a product announcement spread Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt?…

Pushmi-Pullyu

Yeah, it’s the opposite of FÜD. It’s vaporware.

Dan

USPS, here is your new mail truck. You can let those five semi-finalists go home.

William

But, but, that’s not fair for “those five”!😵

Davek

Nice to see some of the details about the Buzz being filled out a bit. Now (and I know this is going to sound crazy) they just have to (bear with me now) actually turn a concept car into a production vehicle and build it! Still there? Uh oh… Dang it, where are my smelling salts?

Also nice to see a article written with such perfectly bilingual metric/imperial units. This should be InsideEVs standard policy!!!

antrik

They already said they will turn it into a product… That’s very different from typical concepts.

Pushmi-Pullyu

But VW always says in its press releases that its latest virtual concept EV is going to be turned into a production car. Just like this one.

How often has that actually been true? Almost never. That’s why I call VW “The King of Vaporware EVs”.

antrik

I’ll have to take your word on that…

Vegan001

If this car would come tomorrow with 5 seats, I would buy one. It would be a best seller.

KumarPlocher

But it’s VW which stands for VaporWare.

KumarPlocher

Screw VW and their frequent “awesome car that will come out in the 2020s” BS.

Jason

This sort of cargo van seems ideal for EV. Plenty of flat floor space for the batteries, super simple design. It’s a pity Tesla hasn’t turned their hand to this. I think they would be able to bring it to market faster than VW and probably make it profitable given all their intrinsic development for EV’s has already been done.

antrik

There are a lot of companies offering electric vans now or in the near future. Not a market Tesla needs to disrupt.

William

The Chinese are going big here in N.A. with a 100+ kWh dually cargo van, with a CATL battery.

I saw a mule at the EVgo DC FC, that was pretty massive in size, charging in So.Cal last month.

Jim Whitehead

Its easy to make up inflated numbers. Its just Buzz-wear until Bjorn Nyland test drives it in winter, cursing whenever a car passes him.

William

Bjorn needs to “Hammer It”!

Pushmi-Pullyu

Kinda hard to drive a vaporware EV, unless there’s an EV supplement to the latest “Grand Theft Auto” video game. 😉

Cypress

Cool. Now build it.

Leo Menchey

I want one I’ll park it right next to my Chevy Volt how much and when can I get it let the hundred kilowatt hour battery and do they come in Rallye yellow and white if not South Dakota beige would also be a nice color