There could be an all-electric VW van in your future

The VW BUDD-e, an all-electric van concept, debuted at the Cosumer Electronics show Tuesday night. Photo: Volkswagen
The VW BUDD-e, an all-electric van concept, debuted at the 2016 Consumer Electronics show. Photo: Courtesy of Volkswagen
What do you get when you combine the never-ending boom in #vanlife and a Volkswagen emissions scandal? If you were at the recent 2016 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, you’d know.

But since you probably weren’t, here goes: Volkswagen brand chief Herbert Diess unveiled plans for a concept car that looks a little bit like a vintage Microbus, but functions like a Tesla. It’s called the BUDD-e, a fully electric van with a range of 233 miles and a quick-charge battery that reaches 80 percent capacity in just 30 minutes.

A peek inside the buzz-word packed interior of the VW BUDD-e concept car. Photo: Volkswagen
A peek inside the buzzword-packed interior of the VW BUDD-e concept car. Photo: Courtesy of Volkswagen
There are lots of buzzworthy buzzwords floating around about the BUDD-e, like “voice command doors” and “intuitive dashboard” (which promises to inform you of important things like what’s in your refrigerator at home…um, OK?). The van will be front-wheel drive, with battery packs below the floor, and resembles a sleeker, Jetsons-age version of the iconic Microbus of decades past.

The VW BUDD-e all-electric bus is less surf wagon and more Jetson-themed rig. Photo: Volkswagen
The VW BUDD-e all-electric bus is less surf wagon and more Jetsons-themed rig. Photo: Courtesy of Volkswagen
But what you really need to know is this: BUDD-e could be a reality by 2020, and if that’s the case, it will totally change the way we road trip as other car makers scramble to catch up. Just maybe don’t get your hopes up too high: VW made similar claims in 2003 and then later pulled the plug.

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