VOLKSWAGEN ID.3 First Edition
AutoVolt Magazine|Issue 31
It’s Volkswagen’s most important launch in a generation, so can the ID.3 live up the standard set by the segment benchmark Golf?
Alex Grant

In 1974, a product revolution was taking place in Wolfsburg. After almost 30 years of series production, Volkswagen was phasing out its unusual rear-mounted, air-cooled engines for water-cooling and front-wheel drive, and mounting expectations were mounting on the new Mk1 Golf. It wasn’t the first to market, but the eventual successor to the Beetle spearheaded a new era. As the industry goes electric, the ID.3 looks set to do the same.

It’s hard to overstate just how important this was to get right. The ID.3 is the first product on the new Volkswagen Group electric vehicle platform, abbreviated ‘MEB’, which will eventually be used across its brand portfolio. by 2030, 40% of all cars and vans it sells globally will be based on this single architecture, with economies of scale extended further by licensing it to other OEMs as a shortcut to bringing EVs to market. Ford already has two MEB-based cars in the pipeline.

Of course, the bar is set high even within its own range. The Golf is Europe’s best-selling car; a by-word for classless quality with a strong enthusiast following, often cited as a segment benchmark. So Volkswagen hasn’t called time on its most popular product, but it has discontinued the e-Golf, recognizing that platforms designed for combustion engines don’t result in the best electric cars. With several large markets setting dates to go 100% electric, the segment benchmark appears to have a shelf life.

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