World premiere – VW ID.7: Here comes Wolfsburg’s range star!

VW has presented the new flagship of the brand and thus a spaceship, so to speak: The VW ID.7 represents the pinnacle of Volkswagen technology and is said to be so sophisticated that it is also driving into the electric future in the spirit of the VW Phaeton, so to speak. The motto seems to be “less is more”. But not with the range.

Not even in terms of size: it is 4.96 meters long, which, thanks to the 2.97 meter wheelbase and the pure e-platform, leads to a fantastic amount of space. The roof line runs at 1.54 meters and is therefore flatter than on any other ID model. A kink below the window line runs along the entire side of the vehicle and ends in a spoiler-like spoiler lip on the tailgate. With its flowing lines, the body looks more streamlined than it is: the drag coefficient is a good but not outstanding 0.23. The same length, but ten centimeters flatter Tesla Model S has 0.208. In the design, they continued the comic-like look of the ID line. Despite its size, this gives the ID.7 an almost likeable appearance, with a smile at the front and a continuous strip of lights at the rear. The middle area only turns red when the light is activated, otherwise it is white. The front headlights are also connected by an LED strip – but this is always white. After getting in, the sympathy ends for many again: It remains with the touch elements on the steering wheel, which are unloved (even by the new VW brand boss Thomas Schäfer), even those Touch sliders for regulating volume and temperature have made it into the ID.7 – but they are finally backlit. Anyway. In addition, you still have to switch on the door console if you want to open or close the rear windows, including the tendency to operate incorrectly. Except for a small field with light functions etc. on the left below the steering wheel and the hazard warning button on the dashboard, there are no other controls, everything Functions are controlled via the standard 15-inch touchscreen. Or via voice control. The menu navigation on the screen has been completely redesigned and is said to be significantly more intuitive than in the other IDs. The band that stretches across the dashboard and houses the new, intelligent air vents is a style-defining feature of the interior. These can wave and are already activated when the driver approaches the vehicle with the car key. The minimalist speedometer display, which only provides the most important information, is also integrated into this band. Everything else can be found in the standard head-up display with virtual reality. Depending on this, information is displayed at a distance of 3.5 meters (status displays such as speed and current speed limit) in the lower area or further up at a distance of 10 meters (displays relevant to driving, for example from the navigation system). Basically, such a head-up display is a practical tool. Only: Anyone who feels distracted by such displays, which probably take up a large area of ​​the field of vision, has no alternative here in the VW ID.7. Anyone who feels stressed by this (or something else) can get out of the front seats for an extra charge get a massage. Up to twelve air cushions replace the masseur or masseuse. The seats also recognize automatically whether they should be heated and/or ventilated. The optional glass panorama roof, on the other hand, only lets through as much sunlight as desired through electrical clouding – but not automatically. Coatings on the inside are intended to prevent too much heat from being radiated outside in winter. 532 liters of luggage fit into the trunk. With the rear seat backs completely folded down, it will probably be around 1600 liters. E-drive with good rangeFor the (rear-wheel) drive, a 210 kW/286 hp electric motor with around 545 Nm is initially provided, fed by one of two 400-volt batteries available. The larger one stores up to 86 kilowatt hours net and should enable a WLTP range of more than 700 kilometers. So far, no other Wolfsburg Stromer has managed this. The smaller battery has a capacity of 77 kWh and should last for up to 615 kilometers. The top speed is limited to 180 km/h. An all-wheel drive version with a second motor on the front axle is to follow in 2024. The large battery is charged with up to 200 kW, while the smaller one has to be content with 170 kW. Merging vehicle and swarm data The assistance systems have been further developed. The Travel Assist with swarm data now enables automated driving even when there are no lane markings. It recognizes curbs, etc. Another new feature is the fusion of vehicle data with swarm data from other cars: If an ID.7 registers speed limits via camera, it transfers the information to the cloud and makes it available to other connected vehicles.Market launch in autumnThe second half of the year begins in German Volkswagen plant in Emden started series production of the ID.7 for Europe and North America. It is scheduled to be launched in Europe in late autumn. The start of advance sales in Austria is planned for July, the market launch in October. The launch in China is also scheduled for 2023. The market launch in North America should follow in 2024. Next year, the ID.7 will also come as a station wagon. Prices have not yet been mentioned, but they should start below 60,000 euros.
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