Next stop: America.
Volkswagen has revealed that production of its all-new North American-bound battery-electric SUV has begun. The Volkswagen ID.4, the German automaker's first fully-electric SUV, has begun rolling off the assembly line at the Zwickau plant, VW's first factory to have undergone a complete conversion to electric vehicle production. Zwickau will now solely be building MEB electric platform vehicles, which began with the overseas-only ID.3 hatchback. The ID.3 started production last year, though there have been some major software issues that should soon be resolved.
The production launch of the ID.4 effectively means VW will soon have a far greater EV presence in the US. Previously, the only EV it sold was the highly regarded e-Golf.
"With the ID.4, Volkswagen is adding an all-electric vehicle to its offering in the compact SUV class, the world's largest growth segment," said Ralf Brandstatter, CEO of the VW brand. "Following the ID.3, this is already the second model based on the modular electric drive matrix (MEB). Going forward, the car will be built and sold in Europe, in China, and later also in the USA. That is how we are scaling the MEB platform globally and laying the economic foundations for the success of our ID. family."
VW intends to build 300,000 EVs between these two models at Zwickau next year, but this won't be the only facility building the ID.4 for much longer. ID.4 pre-production is reportedly already underway at VW's Anting plant in China. More importantly, VW aims to have ID.4s rolling off the line eat its Chattanooga, Tennessee factory in 2022.
VW was originally scheduled to reveal the ID.4 at the 2020 New York Auto Show, but that event (along with many others) was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic. Instead, VW now plans to reveal the ID.4 in full next month. Its full specifications should be revealed at that time, but today's press release does mention the SUV can do over 310 miles (to WLTP driving range standards).
The ID.4 is a two-row SUV crossover that will compete directly against the Tesla Model Y. Also coming next year is the Audi Q4 e-tron, the ID.4's luxury corporate cousin that will share the MEB architecture. More details such as pricing and trims are only a few weeks away.