VW unveils new ID concept that previews its upcoming ~$24,000 electric car

by Fred Lambert

September 7, 2021

VW unveiled today its new ID Life electric car concept at the IAA Mobility show in Munich. The German automaker presented it as something that previews its upcoming cheap ~$24,000 electric car.

Today, it looks like we are seeing the first glimpse of this new vehicle through the unveiled of the ID. LIFE concept. If it looks plastic-like, it’s because it is made of recyclable materials.

The exterior is reminiscent of the Mini, but as you can see, this is still very much just a concept show car. However, Ralf Brandstätter, CEO of the Volkswagen brand, made it clear that it previews the previously mention cheap electric car coming to the German automaker’s lineup:

“The ID. LIFE is our vision of next-generation fully electric urban mobility. The concept car provides a preview of an ID. model in the small car segment that we will be launching in 2025, priced at around 20,000 euros. This means we are making electric mobility accessible to even more people. In creating the ID. LIFE, we have consistently focused on the needs of younger customers. We believe that, even more so than today, the car of the future will be about lifestyle and personal expression. The customer of tomorrow won’t simply want to get from A to B; they will be much more interested in the experiences that a car can offer. The ID. LIFE is our answer to this.”

Through the concept, we also get an idea of the powertrain specs that VW aims to hit with the new ~$24,000 EV. They are talking about a front-wheel-drive 172 kW drivetrain powered by a 57 kWh battery pack:

“The ID. LIFE is based on a smaller variant of Volkswagen’s modular electric drive matrix (MEB) that has been developed specifically for the small car segment. This is the first time a vehicle based on the MEB has front-wheel drive. With its 172 kW (234 PS) electric motor, the ID. LIFE accelerates from zero to 100 km/h in 6.9 seconds, while its 57 kWh high-voltage battery enables a range of some 400 kilometres (WLTP).”

A 400 km WLTP range could translate to over 200 miles of EPA range on a single charge, which is also what Tesla is trying to achieve with its own cheap EV. In another nod to Tesla, which just launched the Model S Plaid with a video game console in the back, VW says that the ID. LIFE comes with its own video game console and projector:

“The vehicle comes with a video game console and projector, as well as a projection screen that extends from the dash panel when required.”

The automaker is talking about launching a production version of the ID. LIFE in 2025.