Watch: This Electric VW Can Go Completely Off-Grid

Volkswagen is, all of a sudden, very interested in making electric vehicles, but backyard mechanics and Volks-folks have been creating electric VWs for years now. This version goes one step further, creating a Westfalian-style solar powered microbus.

The impressive bus goes about 50 miles on a charge, the power for which, the owner and creator Brett Belan says, can be generated entirely through the tilting solar panels up top. Naturally, though, the sun can’t be fully trusted, so there are more traditional plugs through which the power for the 1,000 lbs of lead acid batteries can be charged.

Those batteries sound like a drag, but turn out to be pretty useful when the wind whips up, preventing the bus from tipping over when it’s charging. And when the panel is up, Belan can put up tarps to turn this solar van into a camper van.

All the same, Belan says he has plans to replace the batteries with more efficient lithium ones. With that and solar awnings to capture more of the sun’s energy, he expects he can a few hundred miles of range out of his solar bus. Who needs an I.D. Buzz when you could have one of these?