Automotive

VW's sub-$40K 250-mile ID.4 crossover dares Americans to go electric

VW's sub-$40K 250-mile ID.4 cr...
The Volkswagen ID.4 will launch in early 2021
The Volkswagen ID.4 will launch in early 2021
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After much teasing, VW debuted the all-new ID.4 on Wednesday
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After much teasing, VW debuted the all-new ID.4 on Wednesday
The Volkswagen ID.4 will launch as a RWD model, with an AWD following
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The Volkswagen ID.4 will launch as a RWD model, with an AWD following
The 82-kWh battery is covered by an extruded aluminum frame and bolted to the steel frame
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The 82-kWh battery is covered by an extruded aluminum frame and bolted to the steel frame
Volkswagen ID.4 trunk
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Volkswagen ID.4 trunk
The split seats fold down for more cargo space
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The split seats fold down for more cargo space
VW explains that the headlights "flow backwards, hinting at the aerodynamic nature of the car"
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VW explains that the headlights "flow backwards, hinting at the aerodynamic nature of the car"
Wireless charging comes standard
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Wireless charging comes standard
A $43,995 ID.4 1st Edition will be the first to launch, bringing extra package content and unique badging
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A $43,995 ID.4 1st Edition will be the first to launch, bringing extra package content and unique badging
The $4,500 Statement package includes an illuminated VW badge and wings
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The $4,500 Statement package includes an illuminated VW badge and wings
Inside the VW ID.4
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Inside the VW ID.4
Inside the VW ID.4
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Inside the VW ID.4
The Volkswagen ID.4 RWD Pro comes powered by a 201-hp rear motor
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The Volkswagen ID.4 RWD Pro comes powered by a 201-hp rear motor
That 5.3-in digital cockpit looks undersized, but at least it's assisted by the high-mounted infotainment display
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That 5.3-in digital cockpit looks undersized, but at least it's assisted by the high-mounted infotainment display
VW estimates up to 250 miles per charge
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VW estimates up to 250 miles per charge
Volkswagen ID.4
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Volkswagen ID.4
Volkswagen ID.4
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Volkswagen ID.4
Volkswagen ID.4
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Volkswagen ID.4
The Volkswagen ID.4 will launch in early 2021
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The Volkswagen ID.4 will launch in early 2021
The ID.4 is capable of DC fast-charging up to 150 kW
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The ID.4 is capable of DC fast-charging up to 150 kW
View gallery - 19 images

Bringing electric vehicle technology closer to the tipping point at which the masses embrace it, Volkswagen today revealed the ID.4 crossover. With the small SUV packaging modern car buyers can't seem to get enough of, a bright, modern look, available all- and rear-wheel drive options, and pricing set to dip into the low $30s after tax breaks, the ID.4 promises to be a statement vehicle, both for VW and EVs at large.

Unlike VW's first ground-up EV build, the ID.3 that launched to much fanfare a year ago, the ID.4 has been developed with the US market top of mind. It will launch in all 50 US states next year and will eventually be built Stateside at VW's Chattanooga plant.

VW has gone back to its rear-motor roots with the RWD launch model, affixing an AC permanent-magnet synchronous motor with 201 horsepower and 228 lb-ft of torque at the rear axle. When the frame-mounted 12-module 82-kWh battery is fully charged, the rear-driven ID.4 1st Edition will travel up to 250 miles (400 km) on the EPA cycle, VW estimates. A 302-hp all-wheel-drive model will follow the RWD to market later in 2021.

VW estimates up to 250 miles per charge
VW estimates up to 250 miles per charge

When charging at a 125-kW DC fast-charging station, the ID.4 will make the leap from 5 to 80 percent charged in roughly 38 minutes, requiring a 7.5-hour charge when hooked to a Level 2 charger at home. Each car comes complete with three years of fast-charging at the Electrify America network of stations.

Using the grille-free classic Beetle as a starting point, VW has done a nice job giving the ID.4 a strong facial identity without sawing and drilling unnecessary grilles and intakes. The upper edge of that face gets pronounced definition thanks to the sharp, wraparound LED headlamps and badging bar between them. A slightly up-curved crease below delineates a bumper area defined by vertical air scoops out at the sides and a honeycomb design down low. The available Statement package illuminates the VW badge and accent line running through it.

The 180.5-in (458.5-cm) ID.4 stands on a 108.9-in (276.6-cm) wheelbase. A gently swept roofline emphasized by contrast black rails adds a sporty profile with help from the roof spoiler, contributing to a 0.28 coefficient of drag.

The Volkswagen ID.4 RWD Pro comes powered by a 201-hp rear motor
The Volkswagen ID.4 RWD Pro comes powered by a 201-hp rear motor

VW capitalizes on the compact, decentralized electric powertrain packaging to give the ID.4 nearly as large a passenger cabin as the longer Tiguan. Simplified and digitized, the interior design is anchored by a rather undersized 5.3-in digital cockpit joined atop the dash by a 10-in Discover Pro infotainment touchscreen (12-in Discover Pro Max available with Statement package). The digital cockpit is adjusted via touch-sensitive controls on the steering wheel, while the infotainment options can be controlled via touch, no-touch gesture control or "Hello ID" natural voice control. The infotainment system also incorporates volume sliders below the touchscreen. An ID. Light strip below the windshield provides another information layer, using both color and audio prompts to emphasize important system and navigation details.

That 5.3-in digital cockpit looks undersized, but at least it's assisted by the high-mounted infotainment display
That 5.3-in digital cockpit looks undersized, but at least it's assisted by the high-mounted infotainment display

Standard ID.4 features include keyless access, wireless mobile charging, rain-sensing wipers, dual-zone climate control and a heated steering wheel. Also standard is the IQ Drive driver-assistance suite with forward collision warning with emergency braking and pedestrian monitoring, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist and rear traffic alert. Available add-ons include SiriusXM radio, in-car Wi-Fi for up to four devices, and power tailgate with easy open/close.

Volkswagen will begin ID.4 Pro production at its Zwickau plant, launching it in US markets starting Q1 2021. Base price will be $39,995, before up to $7,500 of federal tax credit monies bring that down as low as $32,495. The AWD model will start at $43,695 when it comes to market later in 2021. Once VW begins US production in Chattanooga in 2022, it intends to offer local-built ID.4 models for around $35K to start. Reservations opened today on VW.com and require a fully refundable $100 deposit.

Source: Volkswagen

View gallery - 19 images
8 comments
jerryd
I'd wait until they get the bugs out as the electronics is not ready.
But a nice looking EV that should sell well. But no where near as good or featured like Tesla Y is and likely Tesla will get the tax credit and switched to a rebate next yr long before the VW is sold here, cutting the difference by $7500.
Tesla is faster, more polished, has a far better SC system, more range is why it is worth more.
And by the x the VW is sold here, another price drop as Tesla's battery, building cost drop a lot.
vince
Just an updated Nissan Leaf and still 5 years behind Tesla. No thanks.
BlueOak
1) Why does VW insist on the unappealing and eminently forgettable “ID.x” nomenclature?

2) When will eCar designers realize to go mainstream, they should dump the odd, non-mainstream “eCar” styling and details like that stupid roofline accenting that detracts from this vehicle’s styling.
Bill S.
With an advertised range of 250 miles, I can assure you that figure will never be met by folks living in desert regions such as Las Vegas. The extreme heat that exists 4-5 months a year will suck the juice right out of the batteries. Having to run air conditioning constantly coupled with all the other power sucking devices in the car would most likely reduce the range considerably . Once the advancement in battery tech (years away) happens, then I can justify an EV. The Europeans are still a long way off in providing enough charging points to justify EV's on a mass scale, and the long distances between large cities in America make EV's a white knuckle driving adventure. The 270 mile trip between L.A. and Las Vegas comes to mind. VW is on the right track and I love their cars and commitment. They did produce the greatest automobile ever made....the 1967 VW bug.
Smokey_Bear
jerryd - No, Tesla no longer gets any federal help, VW will get the $7500 rebate, but not Tesla.

Vince - as a Leaf owner, I can tell you, this thing is waaaaay better then a Leaf.

Bill S. - A/C does lower your range, but not nearly as much as the heater, so the worst range for any EV is in the winter months, not summer.
nick101
Until some bright spark comes up with swappable modular battery packs, they won't be able to bring affordable electric cars to market. Could you imagine how cheap they could make an electric car if the battery was separate?
Bruce H. Anderson
OK, it looks nice except for the 1950's two-tone paint job. The infotainment screen is an distracted-driver accident waiting to happen, but VW is just following the crowd. Infrastructure will be a challenge, but at least running a new 220 circuit from your main panel (you do have extra space there, right?) to the parking spot will cost less than $7,500.
ReservoirPup
@Smokey_Bear - I think it's not the heater, but the cold that reduces the battery's capacity if the heater is a heat pump. If you have an old EV as me (no heat pump) your note becomes more relevant as the lower capacity is gets knocked with a high draw from the heater.
@nick101 - there's a much better solution for open-minded