Having had two Polos and dreamed about owning a Golf GTI, I was very excited to hear from VW to see if I wanted to try the new ID.3. Yes the ALL-NEW ELECTRIC ID.3! I’ve never driven a fully electric before. Will it be different from the hybrids I’ve test-driven, I asked myself?
Firstly, you might be wondering why VW Harrogate thought giving me a car for the weekend was a good idea. Well, I’m the first person in Harrogate, other than the sales team, to take it for a long weekend. I love cars but I’m no petrol head. I know what I need for everyday life and I’ll let you know, honestly, if this car can handle real life.
The ID.3 facts
- Available with three battery sizes – 45kwh (205miles), 58kwh(260miles) and 77kwh (341miles)
- Two power levels – 148bhp or 201bhp
- Rapid charge within 30 minutes
- Wallbox charge up to 9 hours
- Rear-wheel for now but all-wheel drive will follow
- For a 1st Edition (which there are only 2,000 of) the car is priced at £39,500 but the government if offering £3,000 incentive so this takes it down to an on the road price of £36,500.
- For the ID.3 Life, which will follow shortly expect a price of around £30,000.
Performance & Efficency
So, what’s it like to drive an electric car? Surprisingly easy and fun! With the ID.3 getting from 0-62mph in a nippy 7.3 seconds, it not only impressed me but my dad too! It feels genuinely quick and I’d have had trouble keeping up in a petrol car.
We took the ID.3 out for a drive to Bolton Abbey, 25 miles from Harrogate. Having a low center of gravity and a skateboard design (the batteries run along the floor of the car) it felt like we were gliding along the A59 – potholes were rarely felt. Plus the lack of noise from the engine meant you could just hear a slight buzz from the wheels as they touched the wet tarmac.
As the engine is situated in the back – don’t worry there’s a good size boot – VW has shortened the bonnet making it a super easy vehicle to make even the tightest of turns. Perfect for those school pick-ups and city living.
Having had a lovely autumnal walk, we popped to The Devonshire Arms as we knew it had a charging point for it’s guests to use freely. The battery was quickly topped up to 90% in the time it took to enjoy a bowl of soup and a hot chocolate – happy days!
The car costs nothing in tax, which could save you £150 a year plus recharging at home costs a fraction of filling a fuel tank so you really do need to weigh up the initial outlay, which is a lot more than a similar size petrol car, to the cost savings of running an electric car.
Braking feels more natural than in many of the hybrids I’ve tried. Selecting ‘B-Mode’ provides additional braking effect from the electric motor as it harvests energy. Press the brake pedal, though, and it will use regeneration to slow the car before the disc brakes take over.
Design & curb appeal
Let’s start with the exterior. I really like the look of this car. Yes, they have streamlined it as much as they can to ensure there’s no energy wasted in trying to propel this car forward. But the colour, wheel design and back end design are all eyecatching.
The interior space is where I waver, now hear me out.
The ID.3 has a long wheel base due to the wheels being pushed out into each corner, this does give ample room inside, perfect for a growing family. As there’s no need for gears the center hump has disappeared.
However, I was a little disappointed to find the overall interior a little lackluster. Maybe it’s because they have made a car that is all vegan-friendly (bar the steering wheel but that’s due to change to vegan-friendly too) but in doing so they have made it a tad boring – but ideal for busy parents who want wipe-clean interiors.
The car does away with nearly all buttons and is left with a touch-screen center tablet. A glowing ambient light below the windscreen responds to voice commands and flashes to offer directions and alerts for incoming calls or hazards. You can even as ID to turn on your heated steering wheel whilst on the move – genius!
A swathe of lighting beneath the windscreen changes colours to interact with the driver, glowing white when ‘listening’ to voice commands, giving directions in blue, warnings in red and showing an incoming call by turning green.
One thing I loved was the pedals, One with a pause sign (the brakes) and one with a play sign (the accelerator), just for fun!
Comfort, space and safety
As mentioned there is ample room inside the cabin of the car. This gives great legroom for your passengers. The driver and passenger seats come with armrests which is something I enjoyed having and only added to the comfortable drive. I had thought the seat adjustments would have been electric but this was still hand-operated. Along with other features such as mirrors not being cameras, means the car is kept within an affordable range for families.
The ID.3 has a whopping big boot with 385 litres versus the Golf’s 380 litres.
The ID.3 is a showcase for VW’s latest technology, and that extends to its safety kit. Features like autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane-keeping assistance, a driver fatigue monitor, and traffic sign recognition are fitted as standard. This earned it a maximum five-star score when it was tested by Euro NCAP in late 2020.
Delivered to you Carbon-neutral
The all-electric ID.3 is the first Volkswagen ever that is not just produced with a carbon-neutral2 balance but which is also delivered to you with a carbon-neutral2 balance.
100% it’s made me want an electric car. Not only did I feel really safe, it was easy to drive and I liked the naughty acceleration! I feel the ID.3 is the perfect family car as it offers so much space for car seats and indeed prams or dogs in the boot.
It looks great and I certainly would be happy with this car on my driveway – I just might have to add a few soft furnishings to the inside 😂
P.S. This was a collaboration with VW Harrogate.
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