Volkswagen all-new ID.3 electric vehicle breaks cover

Volkswagen all-new ID.3 electric vehicle breaks cover

Volkswagen's e-up boasts an even cheaper entry price of just £23,000, with a boosted battery capacity to extend the compact car's range to 162 miles.

Three versions of the launch edition vehicle will be offered - the basic model, a Plus variant and the range-topping Max. The 3 in its name signifies just this.

The ID.3 isn't now slated for the American market, but a compact SUV based on it that's preliminarily called the ID Crozz is scheduled to go on sale in the U.S.in 2020, followed by a rebooted Microbus a couple of years later.

Unfortunately, VW did not homologate the ID.3 for the United States or Canada, so there are no plans to bring the vehicle to our shores.

The ID.3 is based off the company's new MEB modular architecture, a platform that will be used for the majority of the electric vehicles the broader group plans to bring to market, though Porsche and Audi are developing a separate architecture for more expensive and higher-performance models.

But is the ID.3 coming to South Africa? The ID 3 is only 3mm longer, 10mm wider and 60mm taller than the current seventh-gen Golf but the wheelbase has increased drastically by 145mm. The boot is 385-litres, comparable to that of a Golf.

The new vehicle offers zero local emissions, with three battery size options each achieving considerable mileage on electric power. The $30k, 45 kWh base model will boast 205 miles of range, while a 58 kWh version bumps battery life up to 261 miles.

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Carrying a starting price of under €40,000 in Europe, the ID.3 1 is going to be offered in three fixed configurations, with the range topper being a "Max" version featuring everything from a head-up display and Beats sound system to a panoramic sliding roof and 20-inch wheels.

Volkswagen has also revealed the long-awaited ID.3 EV as part of its strategy. While there are hints of the Golf, the ID 3's more flexible underpinnings have allowed it to look cleaner. There will also be protests from cyclists, environmentalists and industry critics who want a more pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly transportation policy, and efforts by the auto executives to engage those critics in discussion. In profile, the crisp, uncluttered look of other Volksaegns remains while the rear is again sharper thanks to a more sloping roofline, and a smaller, more intricate taillamp cluster.

The interiors are more of a departure. All the other controls come in the form of touch-sensitive panels, with the exception of the electric windows and hazard lights, which are the only functions to have physical switches. The overall design has a sharper edge to it as seen by the patterns on the doors and on the layered dash.

VW is accepting pre-orders for the ID.3 1 limited launch edition since May and so far, it has received over 30,000 expressions of interest.

From there buyers step up to a 58kWh variant with a driving range of 420km, and finally a top-specification model will be available with a 77kWh battery and an impressive 550km of range.

Locating the ID.3's battery pack in the underbody helps significantly lower the car's centre of gravity, thus offering a positive effect of driving dynamics, says Volkswagen, adding that the electric vehicle has "optimum weight distribution" between its front and rear axles.

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