E-Thing: Has VW got an electric off-road buggy in the works?
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Over the decades, Volkswagen has had some seriously quirky models, these range from the iconic Beetle and Kombi of the '60s and '70s, to a 'Rolling Stones' special edition Golf in the '90s.
Arguably the weirdest model of all was the 'Thing', which was technically called the Type 181, and was a small, all-terrain vehicle that was used by the West German Military from 1968.
Sitting on the same platform as the Karmann Ghia, and using an air-cooled Beetle powertrain, the Thing was quite an oddity, but was insanely practical thanks to its removable panels.
Just like the Jeep Wranglers of today, passengers could remove the doors, fold down the roof, and lay the windscreen down for maximum open-air driving enjoyment.
This brings us to modern-day, where Volkswagen has just recently filed for an 'e-Thing' trademark, hinting at a revival of this awesome off-roader, but with an electric powertrain this time around.
We doubt that it would come back with the same styling as the 1968 model, but could instead come in the form of the ID.Buggy, a concept that was shown off by the German brand just last year.
Considering the popularity around off-roaders with removable parts (Ford's 2021 Bronco) a small electric off-road buggy would be quite a hit with enthusiasts if this was VW's plan.
While it would be awesome to see this thing (pun intended) come to fruition, VW's naming conventions of late hint at it just being an electric restoration of the classic thing.
VW's new electric models are falling under the ID banner, while these electric restorations such as the E-Käfer electric Beetle, and the e-Bulli Kombi use the 'e' moniker.
Either way, we'd love to see both the e-Thing, and the ID.Buggy realised.