Volkswagen have shown their hand with regard to future sustainability and showcased a pioneering new vehicle in Paris last night.
The Volkswagen I.D. is the first electric car to be unveiled by the brand; a concept today, but production-ready tomorrow, with the first vehicles predicted to hit the road in 2020. Released alongside the immensely successful Golf, the I.D. will take on the compact car market in a way that is entirely fresh, declaring a new dawn for the internationally-acclaimed German manufacturer.
Zero-emission and driven by an electric motor which produces 125 kW of power, the I.D. will have a range between 400 and 600 kilometres in a single charge, with a breath-taking ‘Open Space’ design premise within the cabin; never before has a Volkswagen felt so free and atmospheric, with light grey satin seats that can be folded up to produce more room, or lowered to floor level to create a completely flat cargo area.
Even in its early stages of production, the Volkswagen I.D. offers a taste of automated driving, with the vehicle prepped to receive this mode from 2025 onwards. The steering wheel will fully retract into the dash when using “I.D. Pilot”, allowing the driver to simply enjoy the ride. The amount of digital features available in the cockpit are truly awe-inspiring, with even door mirrors being made obsolete. Rather, the I.D. uses sophisticated cameras integrated into the front wings.
With drivers and families spending so much time with their vehicles, it’s no wonder that they almost become part of this domestic unit. Building on the relationship that many owners have with their cars, the Volkswagen I.D. has found a whole new way to communicate in kind. Reading the mode that it’s been placed in, the I.D. will use LEDs from within its headlights to create relatable “eyes”; when the car is started, the I.D. will create a 360-degree light show around its body, finishing with a glow from the four door handles – a gleeful welcome to truly brighten up anyone’s day. Other modes which initiate a light show include charging, drive, automated drive, turning and “goodbye”. A vehicle has simply never felt so conscious.
A digital key allows the I.D. to sense your nearing presence and respond with welcoming lights, as well as a handle which extends to invite you inside. Once seated, a 3D navigation screen ensures that you will always find your way, with transparent layers of data revealing various information such as the car’s speed and remaining battery life. Interior door panels also allow for internal functions such as temperature, entertainment and windows to be controlled from wherever you sit on your journey.
Volkswagen have set themselves a target of selling a million electric cars a year by 2025.
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