Volkswagen Made a Mistake With the ID.4 Electric SUV

The Volkswagen ID.4 is one of the better EVs on the market right now, but that doesn’t mean that it’s perfect. Like any other vehicle, the ID.4 has its share of problems, but there may be deeper issues at play. Here’s a look at how the German automaker might’ve made a mistake when designing and building the 2021 Volkswagen ID.4. 

The best EVs of the year according to Car and Driver

A light-gray 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 electric crossover SUV parked on a road next to a rocky cliff
2021 Volkswagen ID.4 AWD Pro S Gradient Package | Volkswagen of America, Inc. Newspress Limited

Car and Driver recently rounded up and tested EVs to determine the best of the year. C/D came to some surprising and expected conclusions. For example, the Porsche Taycan 4S expectedly earned a spot on the list because it’s one of the best luxury EVs out there. Meanwhile, Tesla had a few contenders in the running. The Model 3, Model Y, and Model S all rank close to the top.

However, Car and Driver named the Ford Mustang Mach-E the best SUV of the year. It’s easy to see why C/D picked the Ford over all others, especially the Volkswagen ID.4. that’s the same story with the ID.4 compared to pretty much every other EV on the list. And many of the ID.4’s drawbacks are thanks to VW’s choices when designing the car.

VW’s mistake with the Volkswagen ID.4

According to Car and Driver, VW “could have gone full GTI” with the ID.4. But instead, the automaker played it safe. Volkswagen designed the ID.4 for “mass-market appeal.” Sure, that decision ultimately makes the ID.4 a good and comfortable car, but not much else. In fact, the ID.4’s performance is so bad that the budget-friendly Nissan Leaf actually accelerates faster.

The standard ID.4’s electric motor makes about 201 hp and 229 lb-ft of torque. That’s about 50 hp more than the standard Nissan Leaf’s horsepower, but the ID.4 can go from 0 to 60 mph in only 7.6 seconds. So it’s no surprise that Car and Driver said customers will have to look past the ID.4’s “slow-for-an-EV acceleration.” 

If VW had “gone full GTI,” those numbers would be a different story. This issue “smacks of a German brand trying to satisfy what it thinks are American tastes,” C/D says.

But fortunately, Volkswagen has realized that drivers want power, and a more powerful ID.4 is coming soon. 

An overview of the 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 

Though the Volkswagen ID.4 is flawed in its performance, it’s still a good EV. One benefit is that it starts at about $41,000, so it’s not as expensive as many other new electric cars.

In addition, it’s a crossover SUV, so it’s more practical than smaller EVs. Behind the rear row, this Volkswagen offers 30.3 cubic feet of cargo space. And with the rear seats folded down, it provides 64.2 cubic feet.

Plus, although not a luxury car, the ID.4 certainly has a unique interior feel. That’s thanks to its quiet, smooth ride and many “ultramodern touches,” C/D notes. It also comes standard with a 10-inch touchscreen and a few advanced safety features.

In addition, the Volkswagen ID.4 gets about 250 miles of range on a single charge. That’s a decent and practical range for daily driving, but it’s not spectacular either.

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