On Monday, the new Volkswagen ID.7 all-electric sedan officially debuted. The latest member of the German automaker’s ID. family of battery-powered vehicles, this slippery four-door promises big range and good performance.
The real McCoy
The ID.7 was announced back at CES in January. Technically, Volkswagen “revealed” this car at the tech-focused trade show, but it was dressed in a special digital camouflage, so it was hard to tell what the ID.7 actually looked like. But the wrapper has been removed and we can finally see this sleek sedan – the real McCoy – in all its glory, and what a design it is.
This is one of the prettiest electric vehicles to hit the road. The design is super clean and elegant, with no superfluous creases, cutouts or tacked-on trim. Volkswagen designers’ restraint is laudable. The sloping windshield brings to mind a Tesla Model 3 and the curving shoulder line is definitely reminiscent of the Audi A5 coupe, a stunning vehicle.
Getting closer, the ID.7’s front end looks shockingly normal, there’s character, it’s not just a flat, empty space like you get with many other EVs. The front lower intake incorporates active aerodynamic elements for efficient cooling and wind-cheating performance. Special inlets duct air around the front wheels and the flared sills prevent the breeze from flowing underneath the body, which could impede this sedan’s aerodynamic performance.
The ID.7’s sweeping roofline extends to nearly the end of the trunk lid, giving the car a dramatic profile. The rear is simple and uncluttered, with a LED strip connecting the taillamps. From the back, this car looks a touch too tall and narrow, but this is probably its only unflattering angle.
Germany vs. South Korea
As for competitors, the ID.7’s most logical rival is probably the Ioniq 6 – another all-electric sedan – though, one with much more adventurous styling. The Hyundai looks great in its own right, but this Volkswagen is even nicer and will almost certainly age better.
Cementing their rivalry, the ID.7 and Ioniq 6 are damn-near the same size. At 195.3 inches from bumper to bumper, the VW is about 4 inches longer than its South Korean counterpart, but these cars are nearly the same height and width, plus the wheelbases are less than an inch apart. The VW’s hub-to-hub span is a generous 116.8 inches.
The ID.7 has a good bit more trunk space. There should be around 18.8 cubic feet in the luggage compartment compared to just 11.2 in the Ioniq 6, however, the Hyundai counters with much better DC fast charging performance.
All in the family
This slippery sedan is the latest member of VW’s ID. family of electric vehicles, and it serves as the flagship. The car follows in the tire tracks of the ID.3, ID.4, ID.5, the China-market ID.6 and the retro-inspired ID. Buzz. Predictably, the ID.7 is built on Volkswagen’s MEB EV architecture, though it features a brand-new powertrain, but more on that in just a minute.
At least initially, two versions of the ID.7 will be offered: Pro and Pro S. The latter grade will be introduced in Europe at a later date, though there’s no word whether it will be offered in North America.
Both ID.7 models feature a newly designed drivetrain assembly that includes the motor, single-speed gearbox and inverter. Mounted at the rear and turning the aft wheels, this setup provides 282 horsepower and up to 402 pound-feet of torque, meaning this Volkswagen should offer excellent performance. An all-wheel-drive version of the car with even greater giddy-up is almost certainly in the works, though there is nothing to announce right now.
Big batteries + advanced aero = Range
As for batteries, Pro will receive an 82-kilowatt-hour pack, which has a usable capacity of 77 kWh. The Pro S version will feature a 91-kWh battery with a usable capacity of 86 kWh. These figures aren’t too dissimilar to the Ioniq 6, but the Hyundai has a big advantage: DC fast charging performance.
Hooked to direct current, the ID.7’s small pack should top out at 170 kilowatts, while the larger one is rated at 200. In comparison, other E-GMP-based cars DC fast charge at around 235 kW, a blazing performance, and we expect an identical performance from the Ioniq 6.
Thanks to its slippery body and big batteries, the ID.7 should offer impressive range. On the generous WLTP testing cycle, the small pack is expected to deliver 382 miles on a charge and the larger one a whopping 435. Now don’t get too excited, because these figures will go down, and probably by a lot once the EPA does its thing. Still, this VW should offer seriously impressive range. In fact, the automaker estimates that in the US, the small battery will deliver around 300 miles on a charge, a good number.
An avant-garde interior
Matching its streamlined body, the ID.7 features a suitably modern cabin. The car’s interior is elegantly designed and surprisingly spacious.
Ahead of the driver is a small digital instrument cluster that provides only essential information. This panel is supported by a standard augmented-reality head-up display that can virtually project turn-by-turn directions onto the road ahead, so missed prompts are a thing of the past. Letting the sunshine in, a dimmable smart glass sunroof is included at no extra charge as well.
The ID.7 is available with a 14-speaker Harman Kardon sound system and you can get 14-way front bucket seats. These chairs are heated, ventilated and offer massage functionality; they even have an automatic climate setting that adjusts their heating and cooling based on information gathered from temperature and moisture sensors… Yes, the seats have moisture sensors, which sounds kind of gross.
The biggest story with this car’s cabin is the showy, new 15-inch touchscreen. Volkswagen’s — let’s just say, not great — infotainment system has been revamped with a completely new menu structure, so it should be easier to navigate than before. Additionally, the HVAC as well as the seat heating, ventilation and massage controls are now always visible, so they’re much easier to use. Engineers also added backlighting to the touch sliders, a long overdue enhancement.
The new Volkswagen ID.7 will be assembled in Emden, Germany for both Europe and North America. Pricing has not been announced just yet, but this sleek sedan is slated to go on sale in Europe this fall. Unfortunately, drivers in China and the US will have to cool their heels until next year before they can get behind the wheel of an ID.7, but it looks like this car will be worth the wait.