Volkswagen ID.4 electric SUV 2021: specs, pictures and on-sale date
New electric VW SUV arrives on sale in the UK; prices start from £37,800 in 1st Edition trim, including the government grant
The Volkswagen ID.4 is now on sale in the UK, priced from £37,800 after the Plug-in Car Grant. It's the second model to be released by the company's 'ID' electric sub-brand after the ID.3 hatchback; both are based on the company's 'MEB' electric-car platform, which also underpins the closely related Skoda Enyaq iV family SUV. The first ID.4s are expected to arrive in UK showrooms in March.
The car is only offered in one trim level for now, called 1st Edition. Standard equipment includes 20-inch alloys, LED headlights and a reversing camera, along with a heated steering wheel, ambient lighting and heated, velour-trimmed seats.
The ID.4 is set to be Volkswagen's first 'global' electric car, with production and sales happening in Europe, the US and China. The company is expected to offer a similar range of 'equipment packs' as can be added to the ID.3 hatchback.
Volkswagen makes the same 'carbon neutral at the point of handover' guarantee for the ID.4 as it does for the ID.3, with emissions arising from the car's production at the Zwickau factory either eliminated or offset by the company.
DrivingElectric has already had a drive in a near-production prototype ID.4 on the roads of its native Germany – find out what we thought of it here. A larger Volkswagen ID.6 electric SUV is in the works, too.
Volkswagen ID.4 electric motor, battery, performance, charging and range
Like the ID.3, the ID.4 will eventually be available with a range of drivetrains, offering different combinations of price, battery size, range and performance. For now, the ID.4 is offered exclusively with a 201bhp electric motor, delivering a 0-62mph time of 8.5 seconds and a top speed of 99mph.
The ID.4 uses a 77kWh battery and gets a claimed 310-mile driving range. It's expected that a smaller 52kWh battery will be offered later, with a 224-mile range and a choice of 146 or 168bhp power outputs. These models should offer a more affordable entry point to the ID.4 range. A performance-orientated four-wheel-drive model is also set to join the range later this year, along with a less powerful model that'll keep the 77kWh battery of the 1st Edition.
Charging speed maxes out at 125kW if you can find a fast enough charging point; at that rate, VW says, the ID.4's battery can be topped up to 80% capacity (good for 200 miles' driving) in 30 minutes. All Volkswagen ID batteries are guaranteed to retain at least 70% of their original capacity for eight years or 160,000 kilometres (just under 100,000 miles).
The ID.4 launch model is expected to employ a range of driver-assistance systems bundled together under the 'IQ.Drive' banner. These include parking sensors, lane-keeping assistance, autonomous emergency braking and adaptive cruise control, while there's also an 'Eco Assistance' function that prompts the driver to ease off the accelerator at appropriate times to aid efficiency.
Volkswagen describes the ID.4 as having a "powerful and confident appearance", with plenty of "flowing and strong lines" in its design. An undulating line flows down the side of the car from the edge of the headlights all the way to the rearmost window pillar, while dark cladding lower down gives the ID.4 a tough, off-road-capable look.
In common with the ID.3, it has no radiator grille due to there being no need for engine cooling, while contrasting roof colours and a silvered strip over the windows (the latter part of an optional 'Exterior Style Pack') complete the car's major styling features.
Alloy-wheel sizes of up to 21 inches will be offered, while both the 1ST and 1ST Max specifications come with a towing bracket and roof rails. The 1ST Max also features a panoramic glass roof and powered tailgate opening, while up front it has VW's 'IQ.Light' LED matrix headlights and the tail-light clusters are LEDs, too.
Colours available on the ID.4 1ST and ID.4 1ST Max at launch in Europe included Blue Dusk Metallic, Glacier White Metallic, Honey Yellow Metallic and Manganese Grey Metallic – and it's likely that most of these will be offered to UK buyers, too. Exterior dimensions are 4,584mm (length), 1,852mm (width) and 1,612mm (height).
Interior, technology and practicality
Volkswagen says that thanks to its long wheelbase, the ID.4 offers as much interior space as a model from the class above. While exact UK specification has still to be confirmed, the cars available initially in Europe got microfibre velour seat trim finished in Platinum Grey – a colour also found on the door trims and dashboard panelling.
Most of the car's functions are controlled by touchscreen interfaces, with a main screen size of up to 12 inches depending on trim level. This operates features such as the sat nav, phone connectivity and driver assistance systems, while there's also a compact display directly in the driver's field of view that displays the most important information, selectable using steering-wheel-mounted controls.
An augmented-reality head-up display will be among the optional features that can be added, while the whole system can also be voice controlled. Connecting an Apple or Android smartphone is also possible thanks to the presence of VW's App Connect software, while 'over-the-air' software updates allow for bug fixes or enhanced features to be carried out without having to visit a dealership.
Volkswagen says the ID.4's boot will hold up to 543 litres of luggage with all seats in place, increasing to 1,575 litres when the rear seats are folded down and the car is loaded to the roof. As mentioned above, a powered tailgate is standard on the ID.4 1ST Max trim level, while a luggage net, partitions and variable boot floor also aid versatility. Finally, an optional towing bracket allows the ID.4 to haul a braked trailer or caravan weighing up to 1,000kg.
Handily, the SUV has a 10.2-metre turning circle – identical to that of the smaller ID.3 hatchback.
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