The ID.6 Is A VW Electric Car You Can Only Get In China
Issuing time:2022-03-17 15:30
What is it?
As the world's largest auto market, China is also the most important market for some of the world's largest automakers, including Volkswagen. Perhaps that's why they chose to debut the VW ID.6 here in China before anywhere else. You've heard of the ID.4, now meet its big brother.
Pricing for the ID6 starts at 37,500 USD for the Pure trim level, rising to over 52,000 USD for the top spec Prime version we drove for this review. For comparison, the smaller ID4 starts at 31,000 USD and tops out around 43,000 USD here in the Chinese market.
It looks like an ID.4, but bigger
One area where the ID.6 and ID.4 do not differ much is their exterior styling. The front end features some minor differences in terms of the headlight design and the size of the lower grill opening, both of which are larger on the ID.6. The overall ID styling language, including the signature white badging, remains the same.
Where you start to notice a difference between the ID.6 and the ID.4 is, surprise, surprise, when it comes to size. The ID.6 is a full 30cm (11.8 inches) longer than the ID.4, allowing it to be offered in 6- and 7-seater versions. Behind the third row you have 202 liters of cargo space, expanding to 1820L when you fold down the second and third rows.
It worth mentioning that there are actually two versions of the ID.6 available for sale in China. The first, and the one we’re driving for this video, is an ID.6 X, which is produced by the SAIC-Volkswagen joint venture company. The second is the ID.6 Crozz, which is produced by FAW-Volkswagen, another VW joint venture partner here in China.
The only difference between the two versions is some small changes to the exterior styling. The basic underpinnings, including batteries, electric motors and chassis are all the same.
Like an ID.4, but with more space
Unsurprisingly, the interior of the ID.6 is essentially identical to the simple design of the ID.4. That design is complimented by cool touches like patterned dashboard, the ID logo on the center armrest, and the pedals with “pause” and “play” symbols.
The design and placement of the transmission knob took some getting used to, but we came to love it during our time with the car. The ease with which one can select gears without even removing your hands from the wheel is addictive.
Of course, it's not all rainbows and lollipops, since the ID.6 also inherits the ID.4’s quirks. The touch capacities buttons were a near constant annoyance, often requiring us to take our eyes off the road to make sure we were hitting the right one.
The center screen in the ID.6 is quite respectable in terms of size, however, the UI often left us struggling to find commonly used features in the menu. Its only highlight was the square on the left side of the screen that acts as a home button. It's well placed, and the fact that it's always there means you can easily go back to the home page or to a previous page.
Rear seat passengers in the ID.6 enjoy ample head and legroom, as well as two charging ports. Our higher-spec car even came with heated seats. The 3rd row, however, is quite small, with very little legroom, no air conditioning outlets, and no charging ports.
The powertrain and battery specs for the ID.6 are the exact same as the ones available on the Chinese market ID.4. That means there are three motor options and two battery options. Entry-level models come with a single rear-mounted electric motor making 132 kW and 310 Nm of torque (180 hp and 230 lb-ft).
From there you can step up to a more powerful single motor that makes 150 kW (204 hp), but the same torque figure. Finally, the range-topping Prime model comes with front and rear-mounted motors for a total of 230 kW and 472 Nm of torque (313 hp and 350 lb-ft).
The entry-level model is only available with a 63.2 kWh battery pack and an NEDC range of 436km (268 miles). Meanwhile, the more powerful single motor model and the dual motor Prime model both come with an 83.4 kWh battery pack, giving them an NEDC range of 588 (365 miles) and 510 km (316 miles), respectively.
Our Prime test car summons a 0-100 km/h time of 6.6 seconds. Hardly the fastest electric vehicle available on the market today, but obviously more than adequate. More importantly than that, it manages to achieve a level of German solidity that many other vehicles, especially its domesticate competitors, very much struggle to emulate.
The ID.6 feels quite taut over the road, absorbing bumps with complete confidence. The steering is quite light, even in sport mode, but it provides more feedback than most of the electric vehicles we’ve driven.
But apart from a Teutonic chassis, what does the ID.6 have that can set it apart from its rivals in the ultra-competitive Chinese EV market? To be honest, not very much. There are similarly-sized cars available that are faster, cheaper, and have as good or even sometimes better material quality.
The driving feel is a little bit better than many of its competitors. But is that enough? We're honestly not sure. It's a good car, but simply "good" might not be good enough in the Chinese market.
Article classification: China-only Models