2021 Volkswagen ID 4 Pro S review: A good EV let down by the details

The Volkswagen ID 4 is cheerful on the outdoors and upscale on the inside of. 

Craig Cole/Roadshow

The ID 4 is Volkswagen’s very first all-electrical SUV and the brand’s very first international EV. Correct out of the gate, this car does a good deal of things ideal. The ID 4 is roomy and cozy inside of, it has a easy powertrain, comes with a great deal of regular driver aids and delivers competitive selection for a mass-market EV. On the surface, this cheerful-hunting VW is completely pleasant, but the satan is always in the facts and it is really the small things that just take their toll.


  • Upscale trimmings
  • Spacious inside
  • Solid dynamics

Never Like

  • Not specifically punchy at higher speeds
  • Laggardly infotainment system
  • Discouraging controls

An upscale, roomy inside

But very first, some excellent information. The ID 4 Pro S inside is unexpectedly quality, hunting — and in lots of techniques sensation — like a thing from Volvo. The dashboard’s simple structure is fashionable and functional, with the infotainment screen angled slightly towards the driver. I love the loaded, geometric patterns employed on lots of of the surfaces, in addition there are a great deal of tender plastics and everything’s assembled with painstaking care.

Pro S models attribute twelve-way energy entrance bucket seats, which even supply therapeutic massage functionality. Curiously, these chairs also have minivan-like armrests. Certainly, they look unusual in an SUV, but they’re soft and adjustable, locking in distinctive positions for enhanced consolation. Also, among individuals seats is a very well-imagined-out and multipurpose middle console. Not only does it supply a great deal of storage space and characteristics a roll-top cover, it boasts a wireless charging pad, some American-sized cup holders and 4 USB-C ports, two up entrance and two serving passengers in the rear.

Speaking of the backseat, it is really a different 1 of the ID 4’s sturdy suits. You will find a great deal of space in all three proportions, the cushions are properly contoured and the flooring is just about flat, encouraging make this VW an fantastic persons-hauler. And when it is really time to transfer cargo, the ID 4 ain’t also shabby, both. You will find more than 30 cubic ft of space behind the rear backrest and more than 64 when you fold it down, figures that are very similar to the greater Volkswagen Tiguan. In contrast to some of its rivals, the ID 4 doesn’t have a entrance trunk.

High-tech hits and misses

Going along, a ten-inch infotainment display is regular devices in the ID 4, nevertheless a twelve-incher is included in Pro S and 1st Edition models. Either way, embedded navigation and wireless smartphone mirroring by way of Android Car and Apple CarPlay is included.

You will find a good deal to like inside of this all-electrical SUV, just not essentially the infotainment system.

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That up-stage touchscreen tends to make a terrific very first perception. It is vibrant, tremendous crisp and straightforward to get to. Unfortunately, the infotainment application that lives inside of leaves a great deal to be preferred. The learning curve is steep as some features of the consumer interface you should not make a good deal of feeling, these types of as how you get to the household screen or pull up the radio station you’re now listening to. But worse than the menu composition is the system’s responsiveness. It constantly lags when swiping among screens or pinching and zooming on the map. Frustratingly, it even flat-out ignores inputs at times.

Matching the major display is a digital instrument cluster. At just five.three inches, it is really small, nevertheless it will work very well. It moves when you change the wheel, which enhances visibility. Other regular devices consists of keyless entry, rain-sensing wipers and an automobile-dimming rearview mirror. A lot of things are heated, also, which include the steering wheel, entrance seats, mirrors and washer nozzles. When all-wheel-generate models come to be offered later on this month, they are going to also advantage from a heated windshield to assist hold Outdated Guy Winter at bay.

When I very first listened to VW was switching to touch-delicate controls on its cars I was aghast since this is a battle automakers have currently fought — and lost. Actual physical buttons and switches are always more intuitive and responsive, a thing modern Mercedes-Benz models verify. But in this scenario, I was wholly wrong. The touch-delicate controls VW carried out on the steering wheel get the job done correctly, reacting instantly to faucets or swipes and doing an admirable career of preventing wrong inputs. If only the ID 4’s infotainment system have been this responsive.

Touch-delicate controls are employed elsewhere in the ID 4’s inside, with blended outcomes. There are quantity and temperature sliders on the dashboard that mainly get the job done very well, even if they’re not illuminated at night time, a curious omission. The doorway locks (which include baby locks) and headlamps work off touch-delicate controls, nevertheless they’re basically Okay. More annoyingly, the driver has no actual physical switches for the rear energy home windows. There are two for the fronts, but if you want to decreased the back glass you have to press and hold a different touch-delicate management which allows individuals switches to work the rear home windows. A VW spokesman explained to Roadshow that their analysis reveals drivers rarely ever decreased the back glass in 4-doorway cars, so they ditched the actual physical buttons. Nevertheless, I hope this is a trend that does not keep on.

The ID 4 is roomy and cozy. 

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Sprightly functionality

The ID 4 Pro S uses rear-wheel generate, its aft-mounted electrical motor offering 201 horsepower and 229 pound-ft of torque, respectable figures that are very similar to what you get in a Chevy Bolt EUV (two hundred hp, 266 lb-ft) or Hyundai Kona Electrical (201 hp, 291 lb-ft). The EPA-believed selection these SUVs supply is in lockstep, also, with this VW equipped to go 250 miles among charges, courtesy of its flooring-mounted, liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery pack, which has a web potential of seventy seven kilowatt-hrs (eighty two kWh gross). In comparison, the Chevy is rated at 247 miles of selection and the Hyundai 258. Built for the long haul, the ID 4’s battery is certain to preserve 70% of its initial demand potential for 8 several years or 100,000 miles.

Like basically each and every other EV, this Volkswagen has buckets of torque, which interprets into amazing minimal-velocity scoot. This car is responsive when accelerating from a cease, nevertheless its enthusiasm does wane significantly at higher speeds. The ID 4 is sprightly, but it is really not a large-functionality EV, so you should not anticipate it to hold rate with any model of the Ford Mustang Mach-E or Tesla Design Y, to say almost nothing of some race-completely ready electrical cars and trucks these types of as the upcoming Lucid Aid Desire Edition, which brandishes up to 1,111 hp.

When it is really time to replenish that battery, the ID 4’s eleven-kW onboard charger can do the deed in about 7.five hrs when hooked to a Degree 2 energy source. Observe down a a hundred twenty five-kW DC rapidly charger and this VW can go from five% to 80% in as small as 38 minutes. A welcome bonus, ID 4 entrepreneurs get three several years of unlimited Electrify America DC rapidly charging at no additional cost.

Unfortunately, you can find no entrance trunk in this SUV.

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This uplevel ID 4 is rated at 104 mpge in the town and 89 mpge on freeway drives. Mixed, anticipate 97 mpge. In blended use, this SUV states I am obtaining about three.five miles for each kWh, which is about 118 mpge, considerably much better than what the window sticker states it need to be returning. (That is three.five miles for each kWh times 33.7 kWh, the electrical equal of a gallon of gasoline. Does that make feeling? Nope, I you should not comprehend it, both.)

Many thanks to its just about 4,seven-hundred-pound as-tested control excess weight, the ID 4 always feels planted. It also rides like a luxury vehicle, its chassis tuning staying neither so agency that it clops or bounds about imperfections nor so tender that the entire body flops about when cornering. There is a wisp of roll in turns, but surprisingly small. This vehicle’s steering is as benign as you’d anticipate for a mainstream SUV. It is gentle and easy, nevertheless the turning circle is shockingly restricted at just shy of 34 ft, a thing that tends to make maneuvering in restricted spaces a breeze. Snake the ID 4 by way of some twisties and it is really eager to enjoy, shockingly very well balanced and neutral, like it rotates about an axis which is ideal where by you’re sitting down.

This VW’s entrance seats are nice and supportive, but forward visibility could be much better. It is tricky to estimate where by the entrance of the ID 4 ends and the corners are tough to see since of the bulging fenders. Luckily, entrance and rear parking sensors are regular devices, greatly lowering the probability of hitting a thing.

Like other EVs and hybrids, regenerative braking allows the ID 4 capture electricity that would otherwise be wasted. Its pedal feels easy and normal, nevertheless if you flick the equipment selector about to Brake manner rather of Travel, this VW supplies a great deal better regenerative braking. This is generally a 1-pedal driving working experience, which will take some obtaining employed to but is terrific after you get the sense for it.

You will find almost nothing showy about the ID 4, but it is really even now tastefully developed and really multipurpose. 

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A encouraging hand

All variations of the ID 4 appear with Volkswagen’s IQ Travel suite of help characteristics. This bundles amenities like forward-collision warning and computerized unexpected emergency braking, lane-maintaining assist, blind-location monitoring and more. You also get computerized large beams and highway indication recognition.

Travel Assist, the German automaker’s model of adaptive cruise management with cease-and-go ability and lane centering, is regular devices, also. For the most element, this system will work very well, easily modifying the ID 4’s velocity to match bordering visitors, nevertheless the lane centering could be improved. When engaged, it is really constantly making small changes, shifting the wheel slightly from left to ideal. Competing units from Honda, Hyundai, Toyota and other automakers you should not show this unsettling conduct.

The ID 4’s major rivals are the Chevy Bolt EUV and Hyundai Kona Electrical. Secondary opponents incorporate the Ford Mustang Mach-E and Tesla Design Y.

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Examining the packing containers

The ID 4 commences at about $forty one,000 which include $1,195 in place service fees, nevertheless that figure excludes any potential tax credits, which could total up to $7,500 from the feds. This figure is a little bit steeper than its major battery-driven rivals, with the Chevy Bolt EUV kicking off at about 34 grand and the Hyundai Kona Electrical about $1,two hundred more than that. Of course, the fashionable Mach-E is pricier even now and an entry-stage Design Y even richer. Ahead of any reductions, VW wants $47,190 for the Pro S product evaluated listed here, which puts it solidly in Mach-E and Design Y territory.

The 2022 Volkswagen ID 4 does what it needs to do but, however, not a full good deal more. Its roomy, upscale inside, ample regular technology and refined highway manners make it straightforward to are living with, nonetheless, questionable controls and a slothful infotainment system detract from an otherwise pleasant deal. The ID 4 has its strengths, and it is really absolutely not a poor option if you’re buying for an all-electrical SUV, but there are likely much better alternatives offered nowadays, specially if you’re keen to spend just a small more.