VW ID. Buzz California Plans “Fluid,” Report Says

a car with a surfboard on top of it
VW ID. Buzz California Plans Fluid, Report SaysAutoweek
  • The timing of the market debut of the VW ID. Buzz California camper now depends on "customer response," Auto Express reports, citing VWCV CEO.

  • The base VW ID. Buzz is headed stateside this fall in several trims, with pricing to be disclosed closer to the start of sales.

  • VW had greenlit the California camper in 2021, at least the planning for it, and is now carrying out development work on a greater lineup of variants while timing and market availability remains uncertain.

Those who have been waiting for the VW ID. Buzz to materialize since it was first revealed in concept form in 2017 have aged noticeably between that time and now. Entire new wars and a pandemic have started in the time we've been waiting for it to appear, a new VW Group CEOs has assumed the post, and the blockchain bubble has been replaced by the crypto bubble, which has now given way to AI revolution (which is definitely not a bubble).


And as Apple reminded us just days ago, your phones and tablets have gotten thinner in the span of time that the VW ID. Buzz has been in development.

The good news is that the long-promised electric minivan is headed stateside later this fall, barring some unforeseen event like an asteroid impact or some other global cataclysm—we can't rule these things out.

But what about one other long-awaited version of the ID. Buzz—the California camper?

Back in 2021 VW confirmed that such a model had been approved for production. In fact, we even remember what it said.

"Another vehicle derivative, the ID. California, has likewise been approved for the (Hanover, Germany) site," VW said back in 2021.

But that statement also didn't say when such a model would arrive, or which markets could receive it.

Of course, we didn't expect the California to land at the exact moment that the base ID. Buzz would make its way stateside, which is now scheduled for the fall of 2024 (once again, barring some unforeseen celestial events, fingers crossed).

2024 volkswagen id buzz
The basic ID. Buzz itself is headed stateside later this fall, we have been assured.Volkswagen

Now a report by Auto Express suggests that its timing—if not production chances—now hinge on enough customer demand materializing. This is a different forecast than we remember.

"We did not announce a specific date [for the Buzz] yet, because we are waiting for the customer response on it," VW Commercial Vehicles CEO Carsten Intra told Auto Express. "Today we don't have this push for an all-electric camper."

Intra also indicated to Auto Express that several types of accessories are in the works and are being tested, and that based on the response the timelines could shift.

The VWCV CEO indicated that every model in the California range of campers will be electric, at least eventually, and that the new generation would be called Space.

"In the Space we are going to have the all-electric campervans—from the Grand California down to the smaller ones; the next generation will be a really huge step," Intra told Auto Express.

This bit of news is encouraging, if a little light on timing and market availability, but at least VW isn't backtracking on the whole concept.

It is also worth noting that electric powertrains aside, VW has not offered a straight-from-the-factory van-based camper stateside since the T4 of 2003.

(It's a separate discussion whether it's fair for VW to use the name California if they don't offer the model in the Golden State).

And in those 20 years, VW hasn't brought its subsequent generations stateside either, with the current T7 Multivan-based California and its future PHEV variant not offered in the state of California—or any other US state or territory.

Of course, this hasn't stopped people from (theoretically) buying a Routan and having it converted with a pop-up tent for the roof for an ungodly sum. But let's just say it hasn't been easy in the past 20 years to get an off-the-shelf VW camper with some light camping amenities.

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Hearst Owned

From VW's perspective, before the base ID. Buzz arrives (with pricing still TBA), the entire category of electric minivans, camper or not, remains completely untested in North America. This suggests the automaker will likely want to see at least a couple of years of ID. Buzz sales before a decision to bring the certainly more expensive California here is made.

There is also the issue of such campers being traditionally purchased for—and used on—long road trips that could take them... quite far from a DC fast-charger. Or electricity for that matter.

Infrastructure is certainly a concern, even on the Pacific Coast Highway.

Could the lack of a large range prevent VW from offering a camper version of the ID. Buzz, or will price matter more than range in this segment? Let us know in the comments below.