Volkswagen unveils ID.4 SUV, with India launch on the cards
Volkswagen has taken the wraps off the ID.4, a fully-electric SUV based on the MEB platform. The ID.4 follows the design language that debuted on the ID.3 hatchback both on the outside and the inside, and is launching in international markets in two trim levels, the ID.4 1st and the ID.4 1st Max. Both are first edition models, but the latter gets much more equipment than the former. Think of it this way — if the ID.3 is an all-electric interpretation of the Golf, the ID.4 is an all-electric interpretation of the Tiguan.
Let’s talk about the drivetrain first. The MEB platform is engineered with the batteries on the floor, an in the case of the ID.4, it is a 77kWh lithium ion battery pack that gives the SUV a WLTP-certified range of 520km. The ID.4 has a single motor on the rear axle, that puts out 210bhp and 310Nm of torque. At the moment, only 2WD variants of the electric SUV have been unveiled, but VW has confirmed that all-wheel drive models with more power should make it to the market next year. With electric cars, it isn’t so complicated to execute after all — all VW needs to do is add a motor on the front axle! The ID.4 can do a 0-100kmph sprint in 8.5 seconds, and top speed is capped at 160kmph in the interest of preserving range. The ID.4 is capable of receiving DC charging of up to 125kW, and this allows it to charge to 320km range in 30 minutes.
The ID.4’s styling is, “inspired by nature” according to Volkswagen. We’re not sure about that, but we are certain it comes from the same family as the ID.3. The lines are soft, and there are plenty of light elements that enhance the way the car looks. There’s no radiator because EVs don’t require one, while the black cladding reinforces its SUV positioning. The ID.4 1st Max gets LED Matrix headlamps that don’t dazzle other road users, and 3D taillamps with dynamic turn signals.
The ID.4 is 4584mm long making it little longer than a Hyundai Tucson, but the fact that it doesn’t have a conventional engine means the designers can free up a lot of space on the inside. In terms of what the interiors look like, the dash does away with buttons and switches and everything is touch-operated. The infotainment screen is 10-inches in the ID.4 1st and 12-inches in the 1st Max, and this display can be used for navigation, telephone, media and vehicle settings. Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and Mirror Link is standard. The ID.4 1st Max also gets an augmented reality head-up display that projects arrows and other information on to the windscreen that overlays on to the real world ahead.
The difference between the two models — the ID.4 1st and the ID.4 1st Max — are mainly down to the equipment. I’ll start with the former. The ID.4 1st runs on 20-inch wheels, 2-zone climate control and gets the smaller 10-inch screen. The Max gets 21-inch wheels, 3-zone climate control and the larger 12-inch screen but it also features electrically adjustable seats, a panoramic sunroof and the fancier lights. The Max gets adaptive damping as standard.
Being first edition models, these two variants are limited to 27,000 units globally after which the regular variants (including more affordable ones) of the ID.4 will go in to production. The ID.4 should make it to India late in 2021, or early 2022. Volkswagen did confirm four new SUVs four the country at Auto Expo 2020. The Tiguan Allspace and T-Roc are already here, the Taigun will follow next year and the ID.4 should make it here soon after. After all, the concept that the ID.4 is based on — the ID.Crozz was at Auto Expo as well. It will not be affordable — expect it to be north of Rs 55 lakh, as it will be brought in as a CBU.