Volkswagen Budd-e concept review

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 Simply wave your hand next to the door and it slides open to reveal one of the most advanced interiors around, with a completely button-free digital dash. By swivelling the rotating seats 180 degrees, both the driver and front passenger can interact directly with those in the rear. The impression is more of a lounge than a car.
 The new Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB) uses a drivetrain architecture tailored to the use of small electric motors and high-performance batteries mounted flat between the two axles. This set-up has several advantages: a low centre of gravity helps to improve the car’s handling, plus it frees up space in the cabin and the boot.

Press the D-button and step on the right pedal, and the two electric motors (one bolted to each axle) initiate movement – providing a maximum 304bhp. VW claims it’ll do 233 miles on a single charge, too. The availability of torque comes as a pleasant surprise, as the car ushers you along at a decent pace. Plus, the AWD adds an unexpected sporty feel.
 It’s helped by the well contained body roll – courtesy of the battery position, configuration and weight – but a battery this size won’t weigh less than 600kg in a future production vehicle. It’s a great insight into VW’s electric future – with an insider confirming there will be rear, front and all-wheel-drive EVs in years to come.




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