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Reimagining the VW Microbus: A Conversation with All-American Actor Kareem Grimes at VW Bus Day

By Lichelle Brown and Kimatni D. Rawlins

The 2025 Volkswagen ID. Buzz made its global premiere at the 1st Annual VW Bus Day in Huntington Beach, CA recently. Inspired by the iconic Microbus, this all-electric transporter captured the attention of over 230 enthusiasts who participated in the nostalgic yet futuristic festivities. One of the notable attendees was All American actor Kareem Grimes, known for his role as Preach on the popular football show. Grimes, a devoted VW Bus owner (1967 Deluxe Samba) and an EV aficionado, shared his thoughts on the upcoming VW ID. Buzz while reveling in elation for the forthcoming electric revolution.

Automotive Rhythms: As a proud owner of a custom Mint Green VW Bus, what drew you to the Volkswagen brand?

Grimes: The Microbus was always my dream car. And everybody has an auto brand they aspire towards; for me it’s Volkswagen. My first VW was a Wolfsburg Edition. Then, I picked up a VW Beetle and had a bit of a Beetle phase. As my mindset grew, I was like man, I want a Bus! My career took off and now I had a couple of chips to play with. So, of course, I had to have it.

Automotive Rhythms: The Microbus owner’s group is very eclectic, ultra-loyal, and dedicated to the movement. What is your perspective and how do you represent specific cultural values within this platform?

Grimes: My love for Volkswagen goes back to the days of Crenshaw. If you recall in Boyz n the Hood, they had Volkswagens in the film. And coming from Inglewood, California — while spending time in South Central — owning a Volkswagen was cool for me. On top of that, having a Bus was icing on the cake. So, it all goes back to “The Shaw” in the 80s and being able to represent.

Automotive Rhythms: Where are you on the timeline as we move into a carbon-free future? As an original Microbus owner, are you more excited about the iconic history or the electric vision as we move forward?

Grimes: I think both. I’m proud of the iconic history but also looking forward to lessening our carbon footprint. I’m an electric car owner and was on the ID. Buzz four or five years ago. “They got something going here, so why not,” I thought. Volkswagen is planning an electric Bus and the first time I saw it with a glass roof, I was all in!

Automotive Rhythms: I watch All American with my teen daughters, and the show speaks to the youth and their parents. Tell us about your character’s role as Preach and how he’s become such an inspiring mentor for young black men.

Grimes: I think my role in All American is human. Everyone has made mistakes, but my character Preach did a 360. He became a father and a teacher. It shows young men and women that there are still opportunities for second chances to learn and grow, even if they misstep. Plus, Preach was only supposed to engage in two episodes. But after auditioning and giving life to that character, Preach was given a storyline and an arc.

More importantly, All American is based on a true story. It’s about Spencer Paysinger who grew up in South Central but had an opportunity to attend Beverly Hills High School. He went on to play in college, the NFL, and then won a Superbowl with the New York Giants. This is his story. I’m blessed and honored to be a part of it while bringing joy and happiness into your homes and educating at the same time.

The VW ID. Buzz: The 2025 Volkswagen ID. Buzz has electrified the VW Bus community with epic styling, sustainable features, and the promise of a cleaner and greener future. The global premiere at the 1st Annual VW Bus Day showcased the enthusiasm Microbus aficionados shared worldwide. With his custom 23-window Mint Green Bus dubbed “Minty,” Grimes’s presence highlighted the enduring love and appreciation for the classic van. As an active participant in car shows and an EV owner, Kareem Grimes embodies the mission of the ID. Buzz: shaping a better future while transforming the way we perceive mobility.

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