2021 Volkswagen ID.4 Review

While you’re there, get a cash offer on your vehicle at edmunds.com/sellmycar. When the ID.4 goes on sale in the spring of 2021, it’ll have a starting price right around $45,000 for one of these first edition trims. But if you haven’t got your name in on a reservation yet, don’t bother. They’re already sold out. So what are these early bird first edition shoppers get that you don’t on the regular ID.4 Pro? Well, you get 20-inch wheels, unique badging, projector LED headlights, an illuminated badge in the grill, some black exterior accents, a white interior, some funky cool pedals, and a tiny little hitch receiver in the back with a capacity of 2,200 pounds. So nothing too groundbreaking. A few months later, the ID.4 Pro Model will arrive with a starting price around $41,000. Both of these models will be eligible for the $7,500 federal tax credit if you qualify. That’s a little more expensive than the forthcoming Chevy Bolt EUV, but on the low end, it’s right in line with the Hyundai Kona Electric, Kia Niro, and Nissan Leaf. On the high end, it’s up there with the Tesla Model 3, Model Y, as well as the Ford Mustang Mach-E. As far as the all-important range the ID.4 is estimated to return 250 miles. That’s pretty strong for an EV of this price. Of course, we will verify that in our regimented EV loop, so keep checking the link below for all the latest updates. Initially the ID.4 will come with a single electric motor that drives the rear wheels. Power output from the 82 kilowatt hour battery comes to 201 horsepower and 228 pound feet of torque. Later in the year, a dual motor, all wheel drive version will be available, and that has 302 horsepower. It’ll set you back right around $3,600 and change. Those prices include three years of free charging on the growing Electrify America network, which includes DC fast charging. The ID.4 is about the size of a compact SUV like the Honda CRV. As far as styling goes, I’m a fan. The headlights and grill have strong roots in VW’s current design language, and the body is beautifully sculpted. It looks like an EV that’s not trying too hard to look like an EV. Further down the line we have this beautiful sharp crease that reminds me of the VW Atlas, but it’s done with a lot more grace on the ID.4. I also like these flush mounted door handles and improved aerodynamics. Up top we have these roof rails that are at a convenient height for loading stuff up top. Overall, it’s a really clean execution. There’s nothing that stands out to me as unnecessary. I particularly like this flared kickout over the rear wheel. It had some real presence. Finally, at the back, we have this tapering roof line that has echoes of the Range Rover Evoque. And that is a compliment. And back here we have some really nice sharp white badging that really stands out. Welcome to Earth. SPEAKER 2: I’ve got to get me one of these. SPEAKER 1: The clean, understated style continues on the inside, but maybe a little too clean for the real world. All of this white might look a little rough after a year of use unless you’re driving with white gloves. Just like Tesla’s, there’s no key or start button. It’s just triggered by the transponder key in your pocket and the weight in the driver’s seat. And after COVID, I got plenty of weight to go around. Like Tesla’s, a lot of the controls are in this touch screen. But unlike Tesla’s, the ID.4 has some decent shortcut buttons to make it a little easier to work with. The gesture control system allows you to swipe through screens, almost like cover flow in an iPhone. Is it helpful? No, not really, because your hand’s already there. But at least it kind of cuts down on how many smudges you’re going to get all over the screen. I haven’t been a fan of capacitive touch buttons. And even though the ID.4 does better than most, I’m still not sold. I still prefer physical buttons where you can use them without taking your eyes off the road. But with these capacitive touch, you have to look away very briefly just to see exactly where to put your finger on those pads. It’s not ideal. There is some good simulated clicks through haptic feedback, though, to confirm all of your commands. The infotainment system takes some time to boot up, and the responses, well, they’re not so quick. One thing I really like is the instrument panel is mounted to the steering column. That means no matter where you position the wheel, you always have a clear view of those gauges. Nissan and Mini have been doing this for years, and I’ve always wished that more manufacturers would follow their example. I’ve also had this love hate relationship with the new brand of gear selectors, whether it’s a dial or push buttons. Maybe I’m just getting old and I’m yearning for the days of a big chunky lever. But I have to say I really like this gear selector right here next to the instrument panel. Flick it forward to go to drive, backward to reverse, and push the button for park. It’s super intuitive. As far as front seat comfort goes, it’s pretty good. I have plenty of thigh support, and the side bolsters here aren’t too confining. Unfortunately for people in warmer climates, there isn’t any ventilation or cold seat option. But in my time with this D4, I found that they breathe pretty well, well enough that I don’t really miss them. Massage functions are available, but only for the seat back, not the seat cushion. You’re not going to get the full luxury experience that you would in a Mercedes, but I’m glad it’s here because it really helps to cut down on fatigue on really long drives. As far as interior storage goes, the bins and pockets and cup holders, they’re moderately sized. But they get some points because they’re smartly designed. Down here you have this cup holder, but that whole thing is removable, and you have a bigger rubberized tray underneath. And you can also move these cup holders down into the center console bin. And then you also have these dividers down here that you can move and configure. Underneath there’s also a wireless charging pad that’s really nicely rubberized so your phone won’t slide back and forth, and wireless Apple Car Play and Android Auto are standard. Back in these rear seats, you get one more inch of leg room than you would in the Tiguan. And I have this seat set for me, and I’m five foot 10, and I have plenty of room. Compared to something like the Honda CRV, though, you have quite a bit less leg room, three inches less, actually. And that might cause some problems, especially if you have a rear-facing infancy. Might not have quite as much room, so it might affect front seat comfort. Another nice touch are these little tiny pockets here for your phone. Smart. Behind the rear seats we have 30.3 cubic feet of cargo space, and also the convenience of a hands-free power lift gate. And when you fold those rear seats down, you have 64.2 cubic feet of space. And those figures, they’re pretty good for an SUV of this size. Unfortunately, those seat backs, they don’t fold flat with a floor so. Whatever you’re loading in there means you have to kind of lift it over that to get it all the way in. Unlike a lot of EVs, there’s no storage underneath the hood. Sorry, no frunk. But you do have this dropdown floor for larger items, as well as some extra storage under here for your cords. Another added bonus is if you’re grabbing a bunch of heavy stuff out of the trunk and need to close the door, you can also swipe your leg again to have it close automatically. It’s really handy. When it comes to acceleration, you’re not getting pinned to the seat like you would in a Tesla. But for most drivers, that shouldn’t be a problem. At the Edmunds test track, we hit 60 miles an hour in 7.7 seconds, which is perfectly respectable, and the sharp responses made it feel just a little bit quicker. As far as braking goes, we needed 120 feet to come to a stop from 60 miles an hour, which is an average stopping distance for a vehicle this size. It’s important to note, though, that the brake pedal is really soft. Combined with a 4,700-pound curb weight, it takes some getting used to at first. But with experience, it gets much easier to drive, just like any other car. You also have this B driving mode here that increases brake regeneration. It doesn’t have quite enough resistance to consider it a true one-pedal driving experience because you still have to get on the pedal to come to a complete stop. The suspension tuning is definitely biased more towards comfort than sporty handling, which makes sense for a vehicle of this type. The ride quality is smooth, enough to ribosome luxury brands. And that’s even more impressive when you consider we’re riding on 20-inch wheels. Impact harshness is kept at bay, and there are no floaty rebounds, either. In the absence of a conventional gasoline engine, some EVs suffer from this boomy-sounding interior, but that’s not the case with the ID.4. It remains blissfully quiet, even on some of the roughest of surfaces. And now to answer the big question. Is the VW ID.4 any good? Yes. Yes, it is. It’s actually really good. It’s noticeably more comfortable than a Tesla Model 3 or Model Y. And the infotainment interface isn’t quite as distracting, either. The interior is much nicer than the Hyundai Kona Electric or Kia Niro. And on top of that, the 250-mile range should be plenty for the majority of drivers. And it does drive really well. Personally, I would get this in a heartbeat over either of the Teslas. Pitting against the Ford Mustang Mach-E, well, that’s a different story because it’s pretty even up until you want to have some fun. And in that case, the Mach-E is way more entertaining to drive. Keep checking back at edmunds.com to see where it lands among other EVs, and also to see what our results are from our real-world range test.

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