First Drive: Volkswagen ID.Buzz√

The ID. Buzz is probably one of the most exciting EVs of 2022, but what’s it like from behind the wheel? Jack Evans finds out.

What is it?

How do you go about channelling some of the spirit of the iconic Volkswagen bus into a modern-day EV? Well, you create something called the ID.Buzz. It’s a fully electric bus built with some of the character of the classic, though underpinned by some of the latest battery technology.

But aside from its eye-catching looks, what does the ID. Buzz have to offer and how does it separate itself from the rest of the pack in what is becoming a very crowded EV segment? We’ve been finding out.

What’s new?

You might expect the ID.Buzz to be underpinned by a platform sourced from a conventional van, but no. The platform that this retro-infused model is sitting atop is the same that you’ll find underneath other Volkswagen Group EVs like the VW ID.3, Cupra Born and Skoda Enyaq iV. The idea behind this is to make the ID. Buzz more car-like in the way it drives, yet this scalable platform means there’s plenty of space on offer too.

For now, the ID. Buzz is a strict five-seater, too, though it’s expected that a long-wheelbase version with space for seven is on the horizon – so hold out a little longer if you’re after a more people carrier-focused option.

What’s under the bonnet?

Though you can get cars like the ID.3 and Enyaq with a variety of battery and motor options, there’s just one available with the ID.Buzz. Like other Volkswagen Group EVs the Buzz is rear-wheel-drive only for now, with a 201bhp electric motor sending power to the back wheels.

This motor is hooked up to a 77kWh battery which helps to deliver a claimed range of up to 258 miles between charges. Plus, because it can be charged at speeds of up to 170kW, a five to 80 per cent top-up could take as little as half an hour if you’re hooked up to a rapid charger. Plus, the ID.Buzz has been future-proofed through bi-directional charging, which allows it to store energy and then send it back to the grid during times of high demand.

What’s it like to drive?

Sitting in the cabin will prove familiar to anyone who has driven any of Volkswagen’s recent EVs. The switchgear, steering wheel and key touchpoints are all like-for-like, so it’s easy to get accustomed pretty quickly. On the move, the ID.Buzz is quiet and refined, though at slower speeds, its weight does come to the fore, as it tends to get upset by larger potholes or more distinct bumps in the road.

However, despite its on-paper 0-60mph time of 10.2 seconds, the Buzz feels a lot sprightlier to drive. The steering is pretty light but accurate, while loads of glass and relatively slim pillars mean that visibility is good in all directions. The raised seating position gives you a good view of the road ahead, too, and does make the whole experience more ‘bus like’.

How does it look?

It’s hard to stop and park in the ID. Buzz without someone coming over to ask questions about it, which goes to show just how eye-catching this electric model is. You could park it next to pretty much any current supercar and there’s a good chance that people will naturally gravitate towards the Buzz, simply because it looks like nothing else on the road today.

The split-colour design is particularly striking, but it’s all tied together in a package which takes some cues from the past, but blends them well with current proportions.

What’s it like inside?

Volkswagen’s MEB electric platform has been used to its fullest in the ID. Buzz, as there’s loads of space inside and plenty of storage options. There’s a completely flat floor, too, which means there’s no penalty for the person sitting in the middle seat in the back. Having said that, given how exciting the exterior is, we might’ve wanted a little more flair in the cabin of the ID.Buzz. It’s far from badly made, but the interior is a little bland compared with the superb outside.

But there’s loads of space on offer, with 1,121 litres of boot room available behind the second row of seats. Fold them down and this increases to 2,205 litres. Remember too, that if outright storage capacity is what you’re after, Volkswagen offers a more van-like ID. Buzz Cargo.

What’s the spec like?

Prices for the ID. Buzz kickstart from £57,115 in entry-level Life trim, which brings 19-inch alloy wheels, 10-colour interior ambient lighting and a full navigation system with a 10-inch screen. As we’ve found in other Volkswagen models, this infotainment screen isn’t the easiest to navigate, but it’s definitely at its best in the Buzz. Other standard features include a reversing camera, heated steering wheel and heated front seats.

You could step up to the £61,915 ‘Style’ to gain 20-inch wheels, a power tailgate and upgraded matrix LED headlights, but in truth, the regular specification is more than well-equipped for most. Since there’s no change in battery size or range in the more expensive specification, there’s not too much reason to opt for it, other than some choice extras.


The Volkswagen ID. Buzz is here to show that electric cars needn’t be sterile or boring. Sure, the interior could do with jazzing up a touch, but the way this bus combines practicality, a decent range and plenty of standard equipment is impressive.

The only real snag is the lack of a seven-seater option, which is likely to be a put-off for many would-be Buzz drivers. However, if outright people capacity isn’t what you’re after, the Buzz makes for a very exciting and well-executed option.

  • Facts at a glance
  • Model: Volkswagen ID. Buzz
  • Starting price: £57,115
  • Engine: Single electric motor
  • Power: 201bhp
  • Torque: 310Nm
  • 0-60mph: 10.2 seconds
  • Top speed: 90mph (limited)
  • Range: 258 miles

13 stylish ways to get organised at home

Because January calls for a clear-up, says Sam Wylie-Harris.

Been putting off all those dreary tidying tasks?

When it comes to a fresh start, a good declutter and getting organised can make all the difference – and it certainly helps if you have the right storage solutions to hand.

From baskets with benefits to chic shelving and cute caddies, these fab finds will help you tidy up in style…

1. KitchenCraft Natural Elements Set of 3 Wooden Storage Crates, £38.99 (other items from a selection), Very

Ideal for modern rustic kitchens, who wouldn’t want to get a handle on these numbered wooden storage crates?

2. Set of 3 Dusk Blue Wire Kitchen Storage Baskets, currently £18.71 (were £24.95), Dibor

If you’re short on worktop space, these wire baskets will look brilliant hanging from a kitchen ceiling rack. An added bonus, they’re designed to stack inside each other when not in use.

3. Brabantia Pedal Bin StepUp, £47.50 each, Brabantia

This stylish pedal bin is made from 91% recycled waste – and will do a fine job of storing 40 litres of yours. Available in three colours and slim enough for the tightest of spaces.

4. Wine Rack in Natural Fir Wood, £24.99, Lidl stores

Planning a dream wine tour and visit to a château? Bring the wine experience home with this wonderful 12-bottle wine rack.

5. Long Open Weave Storage Basket, from £18, Bohemia

If your indoor oasis and precious plant life is looking more messy than ornamental, this rectangular basket makes the ideal vessel for a family of ferns.

6. Orthex Smartstore Baskets, from £14 each A Place For Everything

The perfect building block for all your storage needs, these white baskets work well with pared-back designs or vibrant décor. Lightweight, versatile, ample storage for all your accessories and knick-knacks.

7. Hinza Bag Large Green Plastic – Olive, £29, Daisy Park

When you want to channel some retro vibes, this roomy bag looks the part and will hold anything from craft supplies to books and puzzles – or double up for the grocery run and days out.

8. Zuiver Bundy Pegboard, £119, Cuckooland

Mood boards encourage creativity and can be used in practically any room in the house. With customisable storage options, this version comes with three shelves, three pegs and two magnets and can be hung horizontally or vertically.

9. Recycled Stationery Pack, currently £5 (was £10), Dunelm

Tidy desk, tidy mind… With a magazine file, letter tray, accessory tray and pen holder, this smart set can help you strip back any unnecessary clutter.

10. Burnt Orange Cotton Knitted Round Storage Basket – large, £39.99, Homescapes

Available in a rainbow of bright hues, this chunky knitted basket is ideal for keeping lounge and bedroom corners tidy. Looks funky, too.

11. Maya Bear Wall Storage Basket, £45, Ella James

We’ve got a sweet spot for the happy face on this seagrass storage basket. A novelty find for tucking away anything you fancy.

12. Mini Folding Crate in Baby Blue, £5.50, Daisy Park

When you have to box clever, you can’t go wrong with this statement stackable crate, which folds flat and is pleasingly sturdy.

13. Natural History Museum Wall Mounted Organiser, £139, Dunelm

Inspired by museum exhibits and trays of curios, this vintage-look mango wood display cabinet provides a wonderful setting for any collection of salvaged trinkets or objet d’art – or household essentials and stationery. Just lovely.

Joe Wicks on how to make moving your body a non-negotiable

Prudence Wade chats to the Body Coach about the mental benefits of exercise – why this is more important than ever right now.

Fitness might be Joe Wicks’ job, but even he’s not always ready and raring to work-out.

“I definitely have days where I feel flat and I feel stressed, or I can’t be bothered today,” admits the father-of-three. However, the difference for Wicks, 37, is that moving his body has become a non-negotiable.

“If I don’t wake up and exercise, I hold that tension and that stress in my body,” he explains. “So I always see exercise as like a stress relief valve, like a pressure cooker. So when I move my body, I know I’m going to feel so much better at the end of it.

“It’s habit and discipline, as opposed to being genuinely lit up with motivation every day. I know how much my life improves – my relationships, my friendships, my kids and everyone around me benefit when I’m keeping active.

“It’s non-negotiable. It’s a priority for me.”

If you’re at the start of your fitness journey or out of the swing of things, making exercise a priority can seem like an uphill battle. Here’s how Wicks suggests going about it…

Don’t do too much, too soon

If your New Year’s resolution is to adopt the training plan of a professional athlete, you could be setting yourself up for failure.

“Ultimately, the first and most important thing is you don’t do too much at once,” Wicks advises. “Don’t try and go to the gym five days a week from zero, or put pressure on yourself to build a certain diet, or a low-calorie restrictive diet.

“I know this is so cliché and it’s easier said than done – it’s just doing things you can actually sustain, that isn’t overwhelming, that isn’t stressful, that is enjoyable.”

Remove the friction

Does life constantly seem to be getting in the way of your exercise goals? You might want to rethink how you’re doing things.

“I’m a big fan of home workouts,” says Wicks. “Remove the friction of getting childcare, or getting to the gym and finding that hour where you commute. Imagine if your living room was your gym, and you had a pair of dumbbells and a kettlebell – you can have a great workout in 25 minutes, and actually get it done.

“You’ve got to make your life easy – set yourself up for success,” Wicks adds.

Focus on the mental benefits

Wicks knows exercise is a game-changer for his mental health – and if you start experiencing the same benefits, you might find yourself even more committed to moving your body.

“The Body Coach was originally about HIIT training, about body image and losing weight. Over the years, I’ve really shifted my belief and narrative around it, because I realised that people often start to lose weight – but what keeps them coming back really is the mental health benefits of exercise and how their life improves, their relationships improve.”

And with the cost-of-living crisis making things seem pretty bleak this January, Wicks believes movement is more important than ever.

“Last year, people were thinking about [exercise] a bit – it was optional. This year it’s essential, because life’s overwhelming, life feels really stressful,” he reflects.

“And if you don’t take care of yourself physically and you don’t lift your mood mentally, you’re going to be overwhelmed and things can really get on top of you. So see exercise as an essential part of your happiness and make it a priority.”

Prioritise sleep

Wicks is currently finding this one tricky – his youngest child, Leni, is four months old, and her tired dad says: “She’s doing this sleep regression thing, where she’s awake for like half an hour, every night, all through the night.

“Your eyes are stinging, you wake up really thirsty, you’ve got a headache – it really makes you realise how sleep is everything, it’s the foundation,” he adds. “I’m making not great food choices, I’m not really exercising – so it definitely affects me.”

When Leni isn’t waking him up throughout the night, Wicks calls sleep “the number one priority for me, over anything”. He continues: “Certain things knock you back, and I realised just how important sleep is – if there’s one message I’d like to share with people it’s this year, really prioritise sleep.

“When you’re well slept, everything else can fall into place a lot easier. I really think we’re under slept, we sleep-deprive ourselves. We sit up on our phones, we watch Netflix until 3am – we’re doing it to ourselves. So try to focus on sleep, and eating and exercise will come a lot easier.”

Find your tribe

If you have the time and resources, training with a group of like-minded people might be the extra boost of motivation you need.

“I started as a personal trainer and I used to do boot camps, and I always got much more of a buzz from group fitness,” explains Wicks. “Training with people and as a group, it’s more of an energy and you push a bit harder. You feel like you’re not on your own when you’re struggling and people are cheering you on – it feels nice to be part of a little community.”

That’s why Wicks has set up The Body Coach Studios – a pop-up space for a few days in January where Wicks and trainers from his app will teach in-person classes.

“Rather than it being about a ‘before and after’ transformation on Instagram, imagine meeting someone who’s come back from depression, or who’s come back from an injury… and now they’re this really fit, motivating human being. I think that rubs off on people.”

The Body Coach Studios’ is the first ever fitness studio from Joe Wicks’ The Body Coach app. To find out more and book tickets for January 20-22, head to

Is The House Market In Trouble?


The UK media headlines are full of alarming headlines with predications about house prices falling on 2023, so how has the market shaped up in early January on the Hampshire / Surrey / Berkshire borders

There can be no doubt  that the upward movement in house prices has stopped and flattened out, however, that doesn’t mean the market has slowed. House sale transactions are at a good level and there is currently a remarkable resilience in the house market.

We should also remember that when intuitions such as the Halifax  or the BBC make statements such as UK house prices will drop by 8%, they are suggesting this for the UK as a whole and not specifically Hampshire / Surrey / Berkshire borders. Also, if you look back on house price predictions in the past they are typically found to be wrong.

There can be no doubt however that the days of constant upward movements in house prices are gone for the short to medium term, despite buyers still being in a competitive environment because there is so little property for sale on the supply side. The cost of living will make buyers more cautious so price sensitivity will be a factor, but the house market will remain in good shape.

Some Facts About January 2023 House Sales

To demonstrate how resilient the market is and how the buyer demand remains very high, just take a look at the following properties that have exchanged contracts in the last five days. This wouldn’t happen in a flaky market because fewer buyers would remain committed to their house purchase.

The following is a selection of properties that have proceed to exchange in the last five days, despite the backdrop of media commentary. The price range is as impressive as the amount of buyers that have remained committed to their individual purchase plans.

The Blue Triangle Fleet – Exchanged c. £1.6m.
Hazeley Lea – Exchanged c. £1.6m
Hartley Wintney – Exchanged c. £900,000
North Warnborough – Exchanged c. £1.3m.
Odiham – Exchanged c. £875,000
Hartley Wintney – Exchanged c. £695,000
Odiham – Exchanged c. £800,000
Odiham – Exchanged c. £600,000
Fleet – Exchanged c. £800,000
Fleet – Exchanged c. £700,000

Fleet, Hampshire – Exchanged This Week (guide c. £1.6m.)

Hazeley Lea, Hartley Wintney, Hampshire – Exchanged This Week (guide c. £1.6m.)

Hartley Wintney, Hampshire – Exchanged This Week (guide £900,000)

North Warnborough, Hampshire – Exchanged / Completes This Week (guide c. £1.3m.)

Odiham, Hampshire – Exchanged This Week (guide c. £875,000)

Hartley Wintney, Hampshire – Exchanged This Week (guide c. £695,000)

Odiham, Hampshire – Exchanged This Week (guide c. £800,000)

Odiham, Hampshire – Exchanged This Week (guide c. £600,000)

Fleet, Hampshire – Exchanged This Week (guide c. £800,000)

Fleet, Hampshire – Exchanged This Week (guide c. £700,000)

By any standards most would agree that this is an impressive performance demonstrating the strength of buyer demand.

We believe the house prices we are experiencing in December 2022 will be around the same level by December 2023, if the current supply side levels remain in place and the cost of borrowing doesn’t increase significantly.

If you need market insight at any time in 2023, just go to our web site and ask your nearest branch for a free no obligation house price appraisal.

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