Volkswagen chose the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas to preview its first fully electric sedan, the ID.7.
The production version of the ID.Aero concept will launch in the second quarter of 2023. VW covered the exterior of the car with a “smart” camouflage, but showed the interior and detailed some of the tech features of the upcoming MEB-based model.
In terms of styling, the VW ID.7 looks very similar to the ID.Aero concept from June, retaining its aerodynamic silhouette, although some details have been toned down for production. Those include simpler LED lighting units, larger mirror caps, slightly redesigned bumpers and smaller-diameter alloy wheels.
The special camouflage VW used on the ID.7 creates electroluminescent light effects in different colors, with graphics inspired by QR codes. In order to achieve this result, VW applied 40 layers of paint with conductive or insulating properties, allowing 22 areas of the body work to be independently illuminated and create a special show when connected to the sound system.
Thankfully, the interior is fully uncovered, revealing the final production-spec design. The large 15-inch free-standing tablet-style touchscreen for the infotainment center is combined with a small digital instrument cluster and VW’s augmented reality heads-up display. The touch sliders under the screen, which control the climate functions and the volume, are now illuminated. However, the steering wheel retains the touch-sensitive controls that will soon be replaced by regular buttons in VW models following customer feedback.
A highlight of the interior is the digitally controlled “smart air vents." According to VW, the system recognizes the driver from the key, and cools or heats the interior before they step into the vehicle. The air conditioning system can automatically distribute the air over large areas, or direct the flow towards the body of the passengers. Those functions can be activated for each passenger through the central touchscreen or by using voice commands.
The VW ID.7 rides on the MEB architecture, upgraded to MEB+ for a longer range and faster charging rates. While we don’t have detailed specifications yet, we expect the model to be offered in single and dual electric motor configurations, with a large floor-mounted battery pack. The German carmaker describes the model as an “efficient electric sedan with long-range capability," announcing an estimated range of up to 435 miles based on a simulated WLTP cycle.
VW also revealed the ID.7 will have a wheelbase of 116.9 inches, 3.7 inches longer compared to the Tesla Model 3 and 0.8 inches longer than the Hyundai Ioniq 6, both of which are considered rivals. The EV’s wheelbase is also 6.5 inches longer than in the ICE-powered VW Passat, resulting in a more spacious cabin.
The VW ID.7 will be available on three continents, Europe, Asia (China) and North America. Its official launch is scheduled for the second quarter of 2023. For European markets, production will take place at the Emden plant in Germany together with the ID.4.
The electric sedan will be the sixth model in the ID range, and one of 10 new EVs Volkswagen will launch by 2026.