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Is This The Name Of Volkswagen's Reborn Electric Microbus?

Illustration for article titled Is This The Name Of Volkswagens Reborn Electric Microbus?

Ever since Volkswagen teased their concept reveal for the upcoming CES show, there’s been a lot of speculation that it will be a new, electric take on the old Microbus. Which, is, of course, the smartest move they can make right now. Today, they tweeted a new teaser, and it sort of reveals the name of the mystery machine.


Of course, being a teaser, it doesn’t come right out and say everything, instead giving us a very, very oblique view of the chrome letters that badge the rear tailgate. Also interesting is the large inverted-horseshoe of the taillight design, which looks concept-car fun, and should give this concept the largest CHMSL (Center High Mount Stop Light) known to mankind.


But let’s focus on that name. You may recall that previous concept car rebirths of the Type II have been named New Microbus Concept (2001, very imaginative), and Bully (2011), which is based on the German nickname for the old Bus.

Illustration for article titled Is This The Name Of Volkswagens Reborn Electric Microbus?

Looking at the badge letters, it looks like we’re dealing with

[something] U D D • e

That first letter is at a pretty severe angle, but based on what appears to be three horizontal crossbars and some common sense, it seems this new concept will be named BUDD•e, which sounds sort of like a combination of Bulli and WALL-E, and suggests friendliness, electric power, and a very approachable machine, definitely not the sort of machine that would lie to you about emissions.


Other sites, like our pals at Car and Driver, seem to have come up with basically the same conclusion. It’s posible that first letter isn’t a ‘B’ and the name is FUDD•e or EUDD•e or CHUDD•e or something, but I think BUDD•e is a pretty safe guess.

This feels like a concept-car name, and I’d be surprised if it made it to production, but you never know. I suspect if it plays well, VW is going to be more willing than ever to consider things they never would have considered before.


I just hope this thing uses space as well as the original air-cooled box.

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Santos L. Halper