The VW ID. 3 is the Volkswagen of the future – their most basic people’s car. The 3 in ID. 3 stands for ‘the third era’ for VW – the third generation of high-volume cars. This is an acknowledgement of the Beetle and Golf as the first and second generation people’s cars, respectively. It’s a ground-up EV that will never have a petrol or diesel engine. Hence, the ID. 3 is an entirely new product with brand new abilities. This car is aimed at the budget EV segment, and is expected to cost £25,000, and that’s about the same as a Golf.
The car will be available in three battery sizes – 45kWh, 58kWh, and 77kWh. Their respective ranges are 205, 261, and 342 miles – tested on the WLTP cycle. So real world we may actually see the 300 mark on the larger battery which is very exciting. The exterior is all-new and looks like a bloated VW Up! The cab-forward design and a short, stubby nose make it hard to mistake this for anything other than an EV. The ID. 3 viewed in profile looks like a concept car. Wheels on the stock model will be 18 inchers, but 20 inch wheels will be available and the rear liftback is a single piece of glass with cut-outs for the tail lamps.
On the inside this car is much more original. You don’t have to move your hands much to operate the car. A large, wide information display moves with the steering column when you adjust it – remember the Chevrolet Spark? The infotainment screen is in the middle of the dashboard, angled ever so slightly toward the driver. It has a line of buttons at the bottom, but those are touch buttons with haptic feedback. The only real buttons can be found next to the cup holders. Those control the power windows and other functions. The centre console, again, resembles the one you’d find on an Up!
Wide, unpolished panels of wood and a mix of bright colours give this cabin the feel of a Swedish architect’s residence. The minimalism clears up a lot of space inside the ID. 3. The seats are upholstered in cloth and are flat and wide. VW has nailed down seat comfort in its cars already. The addition of an armrest is comforting in a basic car as this. We understand that EVs are so much more expensive to produce currently, so they tend to turn to cheaper materials for the interior to keep cost down. However this car doesn’t seem to be affected by such issues from what we are seeing so far. The interior is very nice and we hope this follows through to the production car.
The VW ID. 3 is a car for a new generation of motorist. It adds to the ways in which we interact with our vehicles. For example, when you approach the ID. 3 in the morning, the lights will blink – a sort of artificaially intelligent fluttering of the eye. It is poised to be the car millennials will buy in their later years to remember the old days, behind all memories there’s usually a Volkswagen!