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VW’s I.D. to be cheaper than Model 3, plans super-fast charging network

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Cleantechnica

It seems that Volkswagen is taking seriously its commitment to transition from emissions-spewing diesels to zero-emissions electric cars. While it is scrounging together the cash to pay tens of billions of dollars in fines resulting from its diesel cheating scheme, it is also aiming to become the world’s leading electric car producer.

Volkswagen has created an entirely new brand called I.D. to market is electric vehicles, the first of which will be called simply the Volkswagen I.D. and is expected to be offered first in Germany beginning in 2019.

This model seemingly won’t go on sale in the US, but modifications of it should, according to a recently leaked slidedeck.

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Autodesk VRED Professional 2016 SP1

Will Cost Less Than Tesla Model 3

The company claims the I.D. will have a range of 250 to 370 miles (knock off ~20% for EPA equivalents) and cost thousands less than the Tesla Model 3.

In terms of size, the I.D. will be similar to the Volkswagen Golf and, like that car, will be a 5 door hatchback design. Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess told the press this week he expects the top version of the I.D. to sell for no more than €30,000 — about $34,500 at today’s exchange rate. Entry-level versions could be up to $7,000 less.

“We get a vehicle with the exterior dimensions of the Golf … the abilities of a Tesla … at the price of a diesel,” he said.

If Volkswagen can deliver an electric car with 200+ miles of range, room for 5, and a hatchback for around $28,000, it better be prepared to build lots of them.

At those prices, the I.D. would be competitive with some of the best-selling conventional cars in the world, especially after incentives are figured in.

Tesla may have a better product, but in the mass market, the three most important considerations have been and always will be the price, the price, and the price.

However, VW doesn’t have the original I.D. in its US plans at all, according to recent reports. Rather, the company appears to have Americanized versions planned for a little later down the road. More on that in a minute.

Volkswagen I.D. Built On MEB Modular Platform

Speaking at the Shanghai auto show earlier this year, Christian Senger, the head of Volkswagen’s electric car project, told reporters the company has made “huge progress” in reducing production costs of its all-electric vehicles, thanks in large part to its new MEB modular electric car platform.

“Offering our electric cars for prices similar to combustion engine vehicles really is a game changer,” said Senger. “We’re using the need to step from traditional combustion engine cars to reinvent the VW brand.”

ev graph - cleantechnica

According to a slide leaked from a recent Volkswagen dealers meeting and published on Dutch website Autoblog.nl,  the company plans on introducing 5 electric cars based on the MEB architecture between 2019 and 2022.

The I.D. is apparently for European customers only. A slightly larger crossover vehicle called the I.D. Cross is slated for Europe and China.

The basic I.D. is not scheduled to make an appearance in the US market, according to the slide, but two other electric cars — the I.D. Lounge and the I.D. AEROe — are. Finally, the 21st century version of the 1960s funk, the I.D. Buzz minibus, will roll out to wild worldwide acclaim in 2022.

High-Power Charging Network Due In 2018

At an automobile conference in Munich last week, VW chief strategist Thomas Sedran told the audience that the European superfast charging network being developed by Volkswagen, BMW, Mercedes, and Ford is coming along well.

The first superfast charger is scheduled for installation next year, according to German trade source Automobil Produktion, but we also just reported that Porsche installed one of these 350 kW charging stations at a new office in Berlin.

The Porsche equipment is capable of being used by Tesla drivers with an adapter.

About 400 superfast charging stations will be installed first along main European travel corridors.

They will be capable of up to 350 kW of charging power, which is more than double Tesla’s current max of 120 kW, and they will use the CCS plug. “2018 will be the first fast loader.

This makes it possible for the electric car to travel without worries on holiday,” Sedran said.

Porsche has said its upcoming Mission E four door sports car will be capable of charging at up to 800 kW of power. We’re not sure when stations capable of such an output would be installed.

The CCS standard does not interface with Tesla’s proprietary charging standard at this time, but Tesla did join the CCS consortium last year, an indication that a move to standardized charging procedures in Europe and possibly the US is underway in the background.

If Tesla and CCS join forces, it could spell the end of the CHAdeMO system used by most Japanese manufacturers.

While that might be bad news for CHAdeMO fans, having uniform charging standards could give a big boost to the acceptance of electric cars by mainstream buyers.

Source: Cleantechnica. Reproduced with permission.  

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  • solarguy

    Bring it on!

  • Whilst I encourage VW (and all other brands) to commit to the electric car market has anyone pointed out to them that Tesla isn’t exactly a “stationary target”?

    When they first released the Model S in 2012 their top of the range model (P85) did a 0-100km time that is SLOWER than the “slowest” car they sell now. They say “2019” in that slide for the ID but it’s quite likely it’ll be more like 2020ish before it’s being sold in decent numbers. By that time the Model 3 will have been selling in very large numbers for about 2-3 years with Tesla improving it relentlessly. It’s quite possible it’ll be cheaper than this ID car by then with even more features, faster and fully driving itself!

    Furthermore if they’re going to tout it’s “cheaper” than a Tesla Model 3 they should be at least competing on the same playing field. Is this a luxury sedan they’re building? Or an “everyman’s” Golf copycat? Does it have the ability to drive itself (with an upgrade)? Does it have the same quality infotainment system, OTA upgradability, remote monitoring features etc? If not… no wonder they can build it for cheaper!

    I’m glad every car maker seems to be shitting themselves regarding what Tesla’s bringing now but if they’re going to compete they need to at least bring a product that’s in the same class, otherwise it’s like “competing” in F1 with a home made car.

    • Mike Shackleton

      I thought the article was pretty clear, that this will be essentially an electric Golf (How can VW copycat their own car btw?)
      The Tesla Model 3 is meant to be a competitor to cars similar in spec to the BMW 3 series (potentially the M140i, 125i as well) – while BMW doesn’t have a lot of the auto driving features it does have remote monitoring, access, cameras through BMW connected and they have made a commitment to an electric version of every one of their models by 2020. BMW 3 series has active cruise control and lane following – auto drive will not be far off, they are just a lot more conservative with their technology transitions, but once they have it dialed in, they work really well. Basically if you upgrade your 10 year old BMW for a new one everything still feels familiar and you dial in very quickly to the new car.
      Getting back to VW – one thing they have in this design is a platform that they can use on multiple models – that is the way VW, BMW and Mercedes have been heading for quite some time and it allows for economy of scale. Tesla is building different platforms for each of their models and have a very different design philosophy.
      As an owner of a 1979 Kombi I’m looking forward to the electric bus! Although they’ve been teasing us with that design for a number of years now.

  • Robin_Harrison

    At last, a serious competitor for Tesla. Provided Tesla make no progress for the next 2-3 years.

  • lin

    This cannot come soon enough.
    And just for accuracy stake, “emissions-spewing diesels” should read ” emissions-spewing ICE”. They all stink, it is just the amount and composition that varies.

  • Brunel

    Adapter? Dear oh dear. Porsche and Tesla should develop a global 350 kW plug.

    • Miles Harding

      Maybe 2 x CHAdeMO?? — like an electric bus??

      I think of it as a Supecharger on steroids, so we can expect the same sort of high initial charge and then reducing as the battery physics progressively limit the charge rate. The result being that the overall charge time may not be a lot less than a 100kW charger. (eg 30 minutes vs 40)

      I would expect the charge rate to be the dominant factor in the electrical design. A 350kW charge is a lot more an issue that a 500kW discharge because it will be maintained for 10 or 15 minutes instead of 10 or 15 seconds.

      Could we consider this being another example of marketroids seizing on some differentiating specification they think can be made important to consumers?

    • Mike Shackleton

      My understanding is that VAG, BMW and Mercedes have all got together and agreed on a unified charging standard.

      • Brunel

        Hope that unified plug is installed in Japan and USA.

        Kiwis like to import used cars from Japan.

  • MaxG

    It is all this “me too” business… trying to reduce the cake for Tesla; I for one will reward Tesla for its guts and pioneering spirit buying one of theirs!

    • Mike Shackleton

      Well, when the Model S came out, the number of sales in the US lost by luxury car makers in the same price band as the Model S corresponded to the number of Model S sales that Tesla made. VW won’t be making the same mistake to be late to the party with an electric Golf.

  • George Michaelson

    I want to see somebody quote a plate-price, with on-roads and delivery in Australia. I’m tired of air prices in US or EU equivalents.

    I agree with others that the trim and fittings will matter but when it comes down to it, the bottom line is range and price. We need some basic clarity about both, in Australian conditions.

    • wholisticguy

      The Australian car market is extremely unattractive for new electrics. Import duties, no emissions standards, no electric vehicle incentives, compliance rules, small market, and far away.

      We already have one of the worst range of available electric vehicles in the world.
      We will be getting the low efficiency, high emission petrol and diesel engines that are rejected by the EU, US and China as long as our regulatory system remains as it is.

      • George Michaelson

        so what this says to me, is that we can pray for disruptive events all we like, the only people motivated to provide this product in Australia will do so in a non-competitive context, where if at all, its available at a premium, and based on past practice, a significant premium.

        thats sad.

  • Roger Brown

    Would be better to build some work utes and vans with a electric motors ?