Future Volkswagen Cars and SUVs Will Feature the Return of Physical Buttons

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Volkswagen is preparing to reintroduce physical buttons into the interiors of its upcoming models, drawing inspiration from the ID 2all concept SUV. The company is moving away from the touchscreen-heavy approach adopted in newer models due to customer dissatisfaction. VW’s interior designer, Darius Watola, explained that the ID 2all concept signaled a new direction for all models, responding to recent customer feedback.

VW CEO Thomas Schafer acknowledged that the touchscreen-centric strategy had negatively impacted the brand. The redesigned interior features a series of physical and backlit buttons for climate controls, along with a rotary controller on the central tunnel to manage the touchscreen, reminiscent of BMW’s iDrive system.

In addition to the main central touchscreen for infotainment, there’s a separate screen for driving information, strategically positioned for safety in the driver’s line of sight. Watola emphasized that customer perspectives in Europe differed from those in other global markets. The shift in materials is notable, with VW aiming to reduce the use of hard plastics, glue, leather, and chrome. The ID 2all incorporates soft-touch surfaces, combining fabrics and Alcantara in line with sustainability goals. Some wood and metal elements are also used sparingly.

Watola expressed a desire to integrate as many features and materials as possible from the concept into the production car, expected to hit showrooms around 2025. The concept’s customisable screens, featuring themes like retro graphics from the original Golf, are anticipated to be retained in production.

The ID 2all concept introduces innovative storage solutions, such as a foldable bottom half of the rear bench that accommodates a bike in the rear passenger footwell. Additionally, there’s a storage space beneath the floor of the 490-litre boot capable of holding three large drinks crates, and these practical features are expected to be part of the production model.

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