Above all else, VW owners want a permanent solution to frustrating software gremlins.
Volkswagen has teased a new look for its ID.3 electric hatchback, an EV that shares the same platform with the ID.4 crossover sold in the United States, but many VW fans are less than enthused.
VW's flashy video for the ID.3 on social media hasn't been received well, as many are calling for immediate improvements to the company's ongoing software issues instead of a design upgrade.
In early 2020, we reported on the serious software issues that were delaying the launch of the ID.3, but some of these issues have persisted years later. More recently, the ID.4 sold here also received a much-needed infotainment update of its own. Unlike Tesla and other brands, VW has yet to provide its customers with the same impressive experience regarding over-the-air updates, as these have failed to address many of the software gremlins its EVs face.
Nevertheless, the upgraded ID.3 appears to be quite a looker. The teaser video shows the little EV featured with available matrix-LED headlights, which seems to be the main focus.
Last year, VW shared sketches of an updated ID.3 with a different front bumper, more prominent air vents, and freshly tweaked taillights that flow into the tailgate. These changes were not explicitly visible in the latest teaser, but they give us an idea of the changes that await a facelifted ID.4, a crossover that could do with a bit more visual spark. Other than that, the new ID.3 could get a larger battery and an improved range.
As mentioned, though, few followers on social media were won over by the teaser. One of them described VW's OTA updates as "empty promises," and another, an existing ID.3 owner, was only interested in "proper software."
Those were just two comments from a much longer list, with most calling for VW to focus on rectifying the current software issues first.
In our first drive of the ID.4 around two years ago, we experienced its various tech hiccups for ourselves. The infotainment system suffered from delayed voice commands, slow menu transitions, and an over-reliance on touch-capacitive controls.
VW is slowly starting to improve matters and will even return to physical steering wheel buttons, but thousands of cars are sitting with customers that feel far from user-friendly. Perhaps VW needs to adopt Volvo's new philosophy, where 'brain lifts' - the practice of keeping in-car tech fresh and easy to use - become more critical than facelifts, which are often primarily cosmetic.
The new ID.3 will be revealed on March 1, but we'll be keeping a close eye on the improvements made to its user interface.
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