Volkswagen are one of the largest car manufacturing brands in the world, and home to some legendary marques within the group: Audi, Porsche, Bentley and Lamborghini to name a few. So when they tell us that electrification is the future, we listen.
“The ID. models mark the start of a new era of electric mobility: intelligent, innovative and sustainable. And above all: for everyone. Because a new idea can only make a difference when everyone can be part of it.”
And this isn’t just marketing speak; Volkswagen are working on a number of innovative, fun and electrified vehicles, some harking back to their glory days (such as the ID. Buggy and the ID. Buzz) and some to change the way we ‘do’ electric-vehicles.
Volkswagen seemed to be a little late in getting to the electric-vehicle party. The main offering was the e-Golf, which of course being a Golf meant that it did everything well, but in a regular kind of way, without any fuss or fanfare, but with the ID. range, things are different.
Much of the technology for the ID. has been developed using the ID.R, the race bred supercar that’s smashing electric performance records wherever it goes – over 40 seconds faster around the Nürburgring, and current record holder for the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. If you know motorsport, you’ll know how impressive both these records are.
But it’s not just about fast performance, there is the ID. Buggy, a 21st Century take on the Beach Buggy, and the ID. Buzz which is the updated Campervan, and of course for something a little more … Volkswagen … there’s the ID. Crozz (an all-electric crossover), ID. Vizzion (the saloon version) and of course, the ID.3; arriving later this year.
“ID.3 marks the new beginning of a new, dynamic era in the world of e-mobility. Electrifying performance meets ground breaking design and longer ranges. For people looking for change. The future is ready and waiting. Step on board.”
The ID.3 will undoubtedly take the honour of ‘all things to all people’ away from the Golf; it has been produced from the ground-up, incorporating so much new (yet proven) technology, with thought given to how it works in the real world, for real people, with real needs. It isn’t just about making something to fill a small gap in the market, it’s created a whole new market.
This is a city car, with the ability to make long distance drives a cinch; the biggest battery (77 kWh) should be good for a range of 340 miles, the mid-range battery (58 kWh) can charge for a 180 mile range in just 30 minutes, and if you don’t need all that performance, there’s a 45 kWh option also.
The new ID.3 is a bit like the Golf; it’s Golf sized, designed to be a step-up from other vehicles such as the Nissan Leaf and Renault Zoe, perhaps even the BMW i3, and will no doubt go on to the replace the Golf in years to come.
It offers up to 201 horsepower, and 229 lb/ft of torque (around 310 Nm in new money), which of course comes within an instant, and thanks to the build quality and silent running, it’s like sitting in an anechoic chamber. Silence is golden.
Thanks to the clever design of the battery modules (which fit in a water-cooled cradle underneath the car), it comfortably seats five adults, and there’s no need to pack light when making use of the 340 mile range. The design of the module also gives the ID.3 perfect 50:50 weight distribution, and while that’s not quite so important as it may be for the ID. R, it certainly makes a difference to how the car feels when on the move.
Comparisons to the Golf are going to happen – they’re both mid-size hatches that carry five adults and perform well at everything, but given that Volkswagen have sold over 35,000,000 Golfs throughout the 46 years of continuous sales, it has a lot to live up to.
However, Volkswagen were never just going to rush a product out to take advantage of the current zeitgeist, so you can be sure that the first ID.3s to hit the showrooms will be better developed than anything that’s gone before them; this will be Volkswagen proving their dominance, and showing their commitment to green motoring.
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