Volkswagen ID.4: Pros, Cons, and Other Considerations
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Volkswagen has entered the electric car market before with its low-volume e-Golf, but it never enjoyed much success. In the 2022 model year, the German automaker took a larger leap into the electric vehicle segment with the all-new ID.4 and gave it a handful of improvements — most notably a higher DC fast charge capacity — for 2023.
With the electric crossover segment now growing rapidly, is the Volkswagen ID.4 still a good option for families looking to ditch fuel pumps? We cover that and more below.
Volkswagen ID.4 Overview
The Volkswagen ID.4 is a compact crossover with an economical electric powertrain that runs gasoline-free. This electric SUV boasts a sleek and elegant body that makes it look special without having that over-the-top electric vehicle look some vehicles in this class have. It’s modern and stylish but approachable and easy for the masses to appreciate.
Inside, the ID.4 continues its approachable styling with a simple dash layout that won’t overwhelm anyone. Its dash boasts a clean look thanks to its thin design and a large 10- or 12-inch infotainment screen. The screen contains many of the controls that usually take up a lot of real estate on the dash, including the climate control system. The infotainment system also includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, giving you access to your favorite mobile apps right from the touchscreen.
Because the ID.4 is a full battery electric vehicle (BEV), you will need to reconsider how you plan to travel. Instead of relying on the gas stations you see on nearly every corner, you’ll need to rely on charging stations for longer trips. Fortunately, DC fast chargers are cropping up nationwide, making BEV long-distance travel a reality.
Volkswagen ID.4 Pricing and Availability
The Volkswagen ID.4 is available in three trim levels: Pro, Pro S, and Pro S with Gradient. Its manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) starts from $41,230 in the base Pro trim, which includes features like:
- Automatic emergency braking
- Lane-keep assist
- Blind-spot monitoring
- Road sign recognition
- Adaptive cruise control
- 10-inch infotainment touchscreen
- LED headlights and taillights
- Heated front seats
- Heated steering wheel
- Wireless phone charger
- 19-inch wheels
- Customizable interior ambient lighting
- Keyless entry with push-button start
The Pro S trim’s MSRP starts from $45,730. In addition to the standard features in the Pro, the Pro S adds:
- Fixed glass roof
- 12-inch touchscreen
- Discover Pro Max Navigation
- Premium LED projector headlights
- Illuminated grille and VW logo
- 12-way power front seats with massage and memory
- Leatherette seating
- Hands-free rear liftgate
- Enhanced ambient lighting
- Power-folding side-view mirrors
- Variable-level rear cargo floor
Finally, the Pro S with Gradient checks in at $47,230. In addition to the standard features of the Pro S, this trim level adds:
- 20-inch alloy wheels
- Black-painted roof
- Silver roof rails and accents
The ID.4 is available now for order through VW.com. Finding one at a dealership will be rather tricky due to inventory shortages, so Volkswagen offers online ordering with local dealer pickup.
Volkswagen ID.4 Battery Capacity and Range
The entire VW ID.4 lineup comes standard with an 82-kWh battery pack that delivers various driving ranges depending on the model you choose.
In the 201-horsepower rear-wheel drive (RWD) ID.4 Pro, this battery pack delivers 280 miles of range, but the upgraded Pro S model has just 268 miles of electric driving range. Opt for all-wheel drive, and the range falls to 251 miles on a full charge in the Pro trim and 245 miles in the Pro S trim.
Fuel economy rings in at 121 MPGe city, 102 MPGe highway, and 112 MPGe combined in the Pro trim. The fuel economy on the Pro S is 115 MPGe city, 97 MPGe highway, and 106 MPGe combined.
Moving to 295-horsepower dual-motor all-wheel-drive models, the fuel economy is 106 MPGe city, 96 MPGe highway, and 101 MPGe combined in the Pro trim. The EPA-estimated economy for the AWD Pro S is 100 MPGe city, 90 MPGe highway, and 95 MPGe combined.
The ID.4 features an 11-kW onboard charger that allows it to charge in about 7.5-12 hours on a Level 2 home charger or public charging station. It can also accept 135-kW fast charging that nets it 60-70 miles of range per 10 minutes of charging, depending on the trim and powertrain.
Volkswagen ID.4 Pros
The VW ID.4 is a strong competitor in a growing segment. Here’s what makes it a worthy option.
Ample Range for its Pricing
The VW ID.4 offers up to 280 miles of electric driving range for just $41,230. Sure, this is less than the Tesla Model Y’s 330-mile range, but the price is also over $20,000 lower. Plus, the VW ID.4 is still eligible for up to a $7,500 federal tax incentive, whereas the Model Y is not.
Free DC Fast Charging for 3 Years
Planning on taking a lot of road trips? The VW ID.4 includes three years of free 30-minute charging sessions at Electrify America’s 1,700 DC fast charging stations. Electrify America plans to expand this network to over 9,500 by the end of 2025. This will give you up to 210 miles of EV range per stop without costing you a dime for the first three years of ownership.
The Volkswagen ID.4 comes standard with IQ.Drive, a huge collection of advanced safety features that include travel assist, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, rear traffic alert, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane-keep assist, and more. The ID.4 also aced the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) crash tests, earning IIHS Top SafetyPick+ honors.
It also earned a 5-star overall safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Plenty of Interior Space
Despite being a compact crossover, the ID.4 has a rather roomy cabin. It features up to 37.6 inches of rear seat legroom for taller rear seat passengers. Plus, it offers up to 64.2 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats folded, rivaling some of the roomiest compact crossovers on the market.
Volkswagen ID.4 Cons
There are plenty of reasons to buy the new VW ID.4 electric car, but there are also a few reasons to pause and consider other options.
Limited Performance Options
One huge benefit of electric vehicles is the nearly limitless access to power their electric motors have, leading to huge performance strides. For example, the Tesla Model Y Performance, Mustang Mach E GT, and forthcoming Kia EV6 GT can hit 60 mph in just 3.5 seconds.
The ID.4 doesn’t have that type of performance model yet.
Blends in With the Masses
While some buyers may prefer that the ID.4 has a toned-down design that blends in, others prefer to stand out just a bit. Even with the Gradient package, the ID.4 attracts limited attention. Models like the Hyundai IONIQ 5 and Ford Mustang Mach-E boast more eye-grabbing designs that allow them to stand out in a crowd without making the design too wild.
No Long-Range Option
Finally, EVs generally have several better options that allow for longer driving ranges, like the 77.4-kWh battery option in the Kia EV6 and the extended-range battery in the Mustang Mach-E. The VW ID.4 lacks this option.
Is the Volkswagen ID.4 the Right Electric Crossover for You?
The Volkswagen ID.4 is a great electric crossover for a small family seeking an everyday commuter with ample range, a spacious cargo area, and top-notch IQ.Drive driver-assist and safety features to protect their family and reduce driver fatigue.
The ID.4 electric vehicle may lack some competitors’ top-end range and performance, but it functions well as a daily driver. This all-electric Volkswagen can also work for long-haul drives thanks to three years of free DC fast charging, which nets you up to 70 miles of range per 10 minutes of charging.
However, if you need an EV with more range or better performance, the Tesla Model Y, Ford Mustang Mach-E, or Kia EV6 may be better options.
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