Almost every single car has notable positive and negative attributes. Electric cars are no different in that regard. Therefore, we assembled a series of articles focused on the pros and cons of numerous popular EVs sold in the U.S.
The Volkswagen ID.4 is the German automaker’s second vehicle released based on the MEB platform. With a successful launch after first deliveries in March 2021, the ID.4 has risen to prominence in the EV world as a competent and relatively affordable option in the electric crossover sector.
In August 2022, the ID.4 became an even more compelling offering with a lowered base price and some additional refinements. Despite these advancements, the ID.4 isn’t a perfect car, so here are the positives and negatives of purchasing one.
This ongoing series began with the Tesla Model Y, so be sure to check that one out if Tesla's electric crossover is of interest to you.
Pro: A Near Bargain With The Tax Credit
New for the 2023 model year is the addition of the entry-level $37,495 ‘Standard’ model. Factoring in the $7,500 federal tax credit, the entry-level ID.4 has an effective MSRP of under $30,000, plus destination and dealer fees. Volkswagen also offers the most affordable dual motor crossovers with a starting price of $46,295. These price points undercut virtually all its competition, like the Hyundai Ioniq 5, Mustang Mach-E, and others.
- Hyundai IONIQ 5 pricing starts at $39,950
- Kia EV6 pricing starts at $41,400
- Ford Mustang Mach-E pricing starts at $43,895
- Chevrolet Blazer EV pricing starts at $44,995
While the ID.4’s relatively strong charging curve is to be applauded, the complimentary charging on Electrify America’s network is even more remarkable. Rolling out with the 2023 model year, Volkswagen is releasing the ‘Plug and Charge’ functionality, a feature that allows drivers to effortlessly charge their cars through a handshake, similar to that at a Tesla Supercharger.
As for the included charging, Volkswagen provides three years of 30-minute charging sessions on Electrify America for the original owner. The 82kWh ID.4s will be capable of 175kW fast charging, but the 62kWh Standard examples haven’t yet been given a charging rate.
The base Volkswagen ID.4, equipped with a 62kWh pack, offers a pretty substantial range of 208 miles, but the higher trims are even more impressive. All other ID.4 examples have an 82kWh battery, but the range is dependent on which powertrain is selected. AWD dual-motor variants can go 255 miles on a full charge, whereas RWD models can reach a rather impressive 275 miles. Pair this with 175kW fast charging, and the ID.4 is a great car to take on road trips.
- Hyundai IONIQ 5 Range: 220 to 303 miles
- Ford Mustang Mach-E Range: 224 to 314 miles
- Kia EV6 Range: 232 to 310 miles
- Tesla Model Y: 303 to 330 miles
Pro: Pleasant, Comfortable Driving Experience
Compared to options such as the Mustang Mach-E, the ID.4 has a softer and less punishing suspension, allowing for a more comfortable driving experience. Besides the suspension, the ID.4 has a wickedly impressive turning radius. The rear motor ID.4 has a turning radius of just 15.75’, which is tighter than the Mini Cooper SE, BMW i3, and Volkswagen Golf. Paired together with an expansive front windshield providing excellent visibility, there is no doubt that the ID.4 is a comfortable and easy car to drive.
Pro: Safety Features
At $37,495, the Volkswagen ID.4 comes surprisingly equipped with an array of driving safety features. This is because Volkswagen includes IQ.DRIVE as standard on all ID.4 models. This package contains Travel Assist 2.0, a system featuring adaptive cruise control with stop and go, lane keeping assist, and driver-initiated lane changing abilities. Volkswagen added additional parking technology for the 2023 model year, like a parking assistant with memory functionality.
Con: An EV, Without All The EV Benefits
While the ID.4 is an excellent car for the price, Volkswagen seemingly set its sights on a different demographic of buyers— those coming from internal combustion vehicles. The Volkswagen ID.4 simply feels very much like a gas car in terms of its driving dynamics. The most notable complaint is the lack of true one-pedal driving.
The ID.4 mimics a vehicle with an automatic transmission, so it creeps forward without the throttle depressed, and there is no way to disable it. Moreover, even in Sport mode, the accelerator seems to replicate the feel of a gasoline car, meaning that the torque delivery doesn’t feel instantaneous. First-time EV buyers would likely be okay with these choices, but EV drivers may desire more.
Con: Production Struggles
In Q2 2022, Volkswagen delivered just 1,660 ID.4s, a 71.2% drop over Q2 2021. Volkswagen struggling with deliveries just yields longer lead times for prospective buyers. However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. With the scaling of production at the Chattanooga plant, Volkswagen should be able to get cars out to customers much quicker. ID.4 Standard customers may look at a delivery time of around Q4 2022.