A large family hatchback and every look of a VW, I got my first goo at a static launch of their new ID.3, the future of family propulsion and it is a very welcoming place. Effectively gone is all talk about engines and gearboxes, replaced by Kw output, charging time, full kilometre range, connectivity, interior ambience and the not insignificant aspects and avenues of cost.
Get used to the name ID, as it is the first of some fifty new full-EV’s coming from the Big VW House by 2025. A Sports Utility Vehicle, (SUV), the ID. Cross will arrive in summer 2020, followed by the ID. Bus.
VW have put the ID.3 on a retention offer of €1,000, so global owners can secure the first models in summer of 2020, the full sale of the ID.3 happening in early 2021. Some 36,000 have taken up this offer, with VW Ireland telling me that 100 slots are available to Irish buyers.
It’s worth noting that the first batch due here in mid-2020 will be fitted a 58kW battery offering a range of 420km, which is expected to be the power choice for the masses here. Two more power choices will be added to the menu later, a 48kW with a 330km range and for those with places to go, a 77kW unit with a 550km range.
Albeit a prototype, the build quality of this show-car’s interior materials and layout are nothing short of premium, with innovative delivery of relevant driving information, entertainment, navigation and internet.
Built on VW’s MEB architecture, the rear-wheel drive ID.3 writes a whole new chapter in our need to get to a place, the room inside Passat-esque, sufficient for two lanky males to sit, one front and the other directly behind, with oodles of knee room for both. Boot space is a decent 385litres.
Coming in three versions, the entry ID.3 is expected to cost less than €40,000 coming with;
· 18” Alloys
· Wireless App Connect
· Navigation with Internet
· 100Kw DC charging capacity
· Hello ID. voice control
The ID. 3 Plus, expected to cost less than €45,000, comes with:
· 19” Alloys
· Privacy Glass
· Matrix LED Lights
· Rear View Camera
· Design Seats
· Interior Ambient Lighting with 30 Colours
The top-end ID. 3 Max should retail less than €50,000, with the added toys of:
· 20” Alloys
· Panoramic roof
· Beats Audio Sound System
· Augmented reality Head-Up Display
· Comfort seats with massage function
Prices quoted include the Government grant of €10,000, which place the ID. 3 firmly in the territory of current, no pun intended, cars like 3-Series BMW/Audi A4 and E-Class Mercedes.
The show car came with a full range of ID.3 toys, the high-mounted 10-inch touchscreen infotainment system faces the driver, with a smaller digital display screen mounted to the steering wheel, instead of the conventional dash-inserted drivers clock console.
Tactile and touch-sensitive controls to the left of the dash and on the steering wheel are excellent. And to your obedience, the ID.3 requires nothing more than you to call it via, “Hello ID” and ask it to perform a function or seek a destination for lunch. Via the Internet, the ID.3 will receive updates to its various systems, plus additional features, all in keeping with your purchase of a mobile computer.
Being the top of the range variant, the static ID.3 came with a head-up display that places all relevant driving information on the windscreen in front of you, including augmented-reality sat-nav directions.
Having mentioned the purchase cost of the ID.3, VW Ireland, (VWI), have a number of options for those seeking to share its company. Targeting the popularity of PCP, VWI are reducing the normal twenty to thirty percent deposit to zero or ten percent, with the Guaranteed Minimum Future Value, (GMFV), fixed at a very attractive fifty percent after three years, an APR interest rate of 1.9%.
Still in its infancy and with technology moving at quite a rate, this introduction of an EV into your life by VWI is very attractive. Under this offer, VWI reckon new owners would have a monthly payment demand of €409 over 36 months.
Like all EV’s the principal place for charging will be at the owner’s home. Domestic electric charging for high capacity batteries like in the ID.3 require a 7.4kW wall charger, which will require eight and a half hours to fully charge the batteries from empty. There is a €600 Government grant for the charger.
Away from home, via their We Connect agreement with public charge systems, owners of the ID.3 can set up an account and charge at any of the stations, their mixed activity requiring one card and arriving to them on one monthly bill.
As part of the Ionity Group, which is presently placing superfast charging stations around Ireland, the ID.3 can be charged up to eighty percent in twenty-seven minutes – ESB fast charger will take fifty-two minutes to do same. Get used to the name, Ionity Group, as their intentions also include the greater electric/energy market, where they will provide to homes as well as vehicles.
VW’s entry into the full-EV market will undoubtedly introduce new customers to the silence. Like all EV’s the initial purchase price is a tad saucy, but is offset by low running and service costs. VWI’s initiative for those wishing to go electric is well worth looking at.