Is It Just Us, or Does the Volkswagen ID. Life Look Suspiciously Similar to the Honda e?

As Volkswagen continues to expand its ID. EV lineup, the automaker has been experimenting with a lot of different vehicle builds and styles. Two builds VW is bringing out in the next few years include a three-row SUV and an electric version of the classic Volkswagen Bus. There have also been rumors about an all-electric version of the iconic off-road SUV, the International Harvester Scout. VW even entertained the idea of designing a dune buggy. However, the newest concept model Volkswagen released, the ID. Life, is a four-door hatchback that looks oddly specific to the Honda e EV.

The Volkswagen ID. Life concept model

A Volkswagen ID. LIFE concept car promotion shot from the IAA Mobility 2021 event
The Volkswagen ID. LIFE concept car | Volkswagen of America, Inc. Newspress Limited

In September 2021, Volkswagen revealed the ID. Life concept at the Munich auto show. According to Car and Driver, VW plans to launch this new model, a design combination of city cars and subcompact SUVs, in 2025. It has a 231-horsepower electric motor and a 57.0 kWh battery that has an estimated range of 249 miles. The roof, made of recycled plastic bottles, is made of air-filled pockets of a textile/plastic material and can be removed. Eco-friendly materials are used throughout, including natural rubber, wood chips, and rice husks. Additionally, the interior, when parked, can actually be configured into a bed, as well as a comfy spot to watch movies or play video games. 

The Volkswagen ID. Life looks incredibly similar to the Honda e

Autoevolution pointed out that the ID. Life looks like a German version of the Honda e. In comparison, the Autoevolution writer says, “Well, the ID. Life takes that same recipe, (and) runs through a bit of sauerkraut.” They aren’t wrong. The exterior is almost identical to the Honda e, with both the front and rear light panels having almost the exact same design except without the color contrast seen on the Honda. 

The Honda e

Honda’s first mass-produced electric vehicle debuted in Europe in 2020. The electric motor puts out between 134 and 152 horsepower and 232 lb-ft of torque and has a reported 0-62 mph speed of 8.3 seconds. The 35.5 kWh battery has a range of about 137 miles. Inside, there are multiple digital displays, including an 8.8-inch instrument display and two 12.3-inch infotainment screens, flanked by two 6-inch displays that function as the Honda e’s Side Camera Mirror System.  

While the Honda e has a stylish look and drives well overall, as well as providing a comfortable ride, its starting price of around $38,000 was criticized for being too pricey for an EV with such a low range. Additionally, that low range is the main reason the Honda e won’t be available in the U.S. anytime soon. Currently, it is only available in the European and Japanese markets.

While the ID. Life looks incredibly similar to the Honda e, one different thing is the price. The ID. Life will reportedly have a starting price of around $23,700, over $14,000 less than the starting price of the Honda e. Will the ID. Life ever see production? As Jalopnik noted, they attached a potential year for delivery, as well as estimating range and cost, which increases the likelihood that VW will actually produce this particular concept EV. Before they do though, VW might want to change the design just a bit, so it doesn’t look exactly like the Honda e.

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