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Volkswagen has revealed the BUDD-e Concept at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. The BUDD-e is the first car to be based on the new Modular Electric Platform (MEB) designed specifically for plug-in vehicles.

VW says that with the BUDD-e, it is demonstrating what electric mobility could be like by the year 2019. The MEB platform will enable a production car to have pure electric range that is on par with today’s petrol-powered cars, and the time required to charge the batteries to 80% of capacity is anticipated to be reduced to about 15 minutes by then.

MEB is designed to have the space for electric drive components and large batteries while maintaining interior space and driving dynamics. The 101 kWh battery in the BUDD-e is flat and integrated into almost the entire vehicle floor. It powers two electric motors, one to drive each axle for 4WD. Top speed is 150 km/h and total range is 600 km on a full charge in the NEDC cycle. Like today’s EVs, the BUDDE-e offers several levels of plugged-in charging with the added benefit of cordless inductive charging.

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The concept van is 4.6m long, 1.9m wide and 1.83m high, placing it between two the existing Touran and Multivan T6 in size. Nice proportions, thanks to its generous width, relatively long wheelbase (3,152 mm), and very short overhangs. Apparently “inspired by the iconic charm of classic Volkswagen vans”, the two-tone box does resemble VW’s Bulli Concept from 2011.

As a car for the Internet of Things, the BUDD-e’s infotainment concept creates a link between it and the outside world. Passengers will be able to access their homes to perform tasks such as controlling the air con, turning lights on, or simply checking if the kids are home yet, for instance. In cooperation with LG, the BUDD-e can obtain info from a smart fridge. Smart home stuff, you get the drift.

There’s plenty more it can do, but I like this one the best. BUDD-e can remind its occupants if they have forgotten anything in the car, via their smartphone or wearable. The “Home-Net don’t forget” app has an inventory list where one can see everything that has been put in the car, and if they are still there.

The intelligent “Reminder” also informs when particular items should be remembered. For example, if rain is forecast, BUDD-e will notify the driver if there is an umbrella in the car. Relevant items are fitted with a transmitter (in the form of a small sticker) in advance, making it possible for the car to locate them. No more “S#*%” and turning back.

VW reckons that in the near future, consumables such as windshield wiper blades, or other kinds of personal items could not only be ordered from the car, but also delivered to it using a “Drop Box” that is accessible from the outside. The vehicle “reads” an access code to open the Drop Box for authorised parcel delivery services, using a digital key, essentially making the vehicle a mobile mailbox.