It may only be March, but what you’re seeing here might be the most important concept vehicle of 2023. Even if you couldn’t be bothered by most electric cars, you’ll want to pay attention now. This is the Volkswagen ID.2all and it’s an electric concept car that’s actually worth giving a shit about. The headline figures are incredible: A price tag under €25,000 (~$26,500); a perfectly usable 280 miles of maximum range on the optimistic WLTP cycle; the interior space of a Golf in a properly city-sized footprint. This is the sort of electric car we’ve all been waiting for, one that’s stylish and sensible and attainable for a lot of people.
At a time when many EVs are screaming their differences from ICE cars with bulbous visual language, the ID.2all looks refreshingly sharp. It’s visually a bit of Golf crossed with a bit of Up!, which explains why it evens out to be roughly the size of a Polo. At 4,050 mm (159.5 in.) long, 1,812 mm (71.3 in.) wide, and 1,530 mm (60.2 in.) tall, this concept is exactly the size a small hatchback should be. Excellent.
News gets even better on the inside, where many of Volkswagen’s current transgressions against common sense have been addressed. The driver’s door panel features four proper window switches, the temperature controls are rocker switches, the volume control is a roller, and the steering wheel controls are physical. There’s even a proper knob in the center console for some manner of auxiliary functions. Everything in this cabin makes perfect sense, as it ought to.
So what about the fun factor? Well, small cars are generally more fun than large cars because of their small footprints. Even though the ID.2all’s wheelbase is fairly long for a car so small, 102.4 inches is less than an inch longer than the wheelbase on a Mk5 GTI, a car generally regarded for being sweet in the bends. What’s more, with 223 horsepower on tap, front-wheel-drive, and a zero-to-62 mph time under seven seconds, the ID.2all has some specs like a hot hatch thanks to its new MEB entry platform. Granted, what appears to be a torsion beam rear suspension is less sophisticated than a multi-link arrangement, but look at what that does for trunk space.
In addition, the ID.2all looks very production-like. Concept cars don’t normally bother with rear bumper reflectors, mirrors that aren’t cameras, manually-adjustable steering columns, and rear wipers. I suspect that the production car we’ll see in a few years will look a lot like this concept, which means it should be lovely.
As car people, most of us are collectively unenthused by the deluge of pricey electric crossovers. It seems as if every other month, some manufacturer pulls the sheets off of some bulbous overgrown machine that weighs as much as a Lincoln Town Car and asks for everyone to feign excitement. While vehicles like the Volkswagen ID.4 and Chevrolet Blazer are fine, very few of us are going to buy one for one of two reasons. Firstly, have you seen the sort of used car and/or gasoline $40,000 can buy?
You could buy, insure, and fuel a Ram SRT-10 for about two minutes given its appalling fuel economy. More sensibly, you could buy a cheap BMW i3 like David’s and have the better part of $30,000 to spend on a toy. That’s Honda S2000, C6 Chevrolet Corvette, or Maserati Quattroporte GTS money. Secondly, most of us realistically can’t afford to spend that sort of money on a brand new electric car. Between all the expenses of life like housing, groceries, saving for retirement, and paying down student loans, there just isn’t enough left in the well for an expensive new car.
As such, the Volkswagen ID.2all matters. Electric cars simply won’t catch on unless they’re cheap, and the production version of the ID.2all deserves a chance in America. Even without IRA incentives, it’s reasonably attractive, reasonably functional, and should be reasonably-priced. This little Volkswagen concept is a rare moment of common sense in an automotive landscape seemingly intent on pricing everyone out of the market.
(Photo credits: Volkswagen)
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Concept car means concept price.
They’ve got the ability to make integrated screens and buttons already because my wife’s 2022 GLI has two large integrated screens and has physical buttons. They just need to do that more.
The rear door cut line is extremely bizarre. It doesn’t seem like something they would actually go with, but it seems like they’re trying to parallel the bumper shell cut line and that is the only way to make that happen. If they made the door come down to the wheel arch and then curve around that it would be at a different angle than the bumper cut line which also would look bizarre. The best solution to me is where the door cut line reaches its closest point with the wheel arch at that point it should follow the arch down to the base of the door.
Also one last thing, no chance this comes to America. VW already “replaced” the Golf for us with the Taos. I don’t see them going back on that.
When the rich see all the poor in cheap electric cars, they will start buying gas cars
I want more evs like this and I know it will probably not come here. If I could get this for under $20k I would really be shopping for one. I want an ev as a daily driver I just cannot justify the $30k on a 3rd car and I do not want to risk MY (not David’s) luck on a $10k used EV.
Looks nice and sensible, but what the hell is that name? When did punctuation marks became acceptable in names? Is Kia Cee Apostrophe Dee to be blamed?
(‘Cuda gets a passage because it’s a cool name that actually means something cool and vicious and so suits the car perfectly, and the apostrophe is in front of the name and has an actual philological reasoning behind it.)
Ooooooh, that’s cute as hell…except the interior. What the heck, VW?
The Volkswagen Group does a great tabletty interior: the Porsche Taycan. I’m not saying “rip off the Taycan,” but maybe just kinda…rip off the Taycan. Maybe forgo the passenger-side screen to save cash, but…………please, just rip off the Taycan. It’s a good mix of physical controls and screens and nicely integrated into a coherent dashboard design as opposed to…whatever abysmal Best Buy tablet display they ripped off here.
???? agree w/you Stef. The Big problem with that is that like any automaker selling cars. They rely heavily on the Dr. Suss principle of ‘Stars on Thars’, i.e. ‘expensive/luxury’ cars must have unique UI/UX than pesant vehicles or why would people be willing to hand over 4x the price? Sexy exterior + better performance?
The exceptions to this are automakers that attempt to make iconic ‘classless’ designs that appeal to both pleebs and the rich alike, the original Morris Mini or Mini Cooper definitely come to mind
I’m not a fan of the tabletland inside. Driving a Best Buy display is not my thing. Otherwise I generally like this and it is the size and performance I would buy if…
…they could bring themselves to spend those extra few dollars on handles for the back doors. What a dumb omission. And how much more would it really cost to just use two more of something you are already using on the front doors (and much of the rest of your fleet) rather than a different solution for this?
Dirt cheap?! Excuse me? A scant 3 years ago I purchased a brand new, decently equipped compact VW for $18k. You can give me as many reasons as you like to justify an over 8k difference but, at the end of the day, I call BS. A car is a car, my budget cares not about the powertrain. It’s no different than Whole Foods charging $3.50 for a single Beefsteak tomato because it’s “organic”. What a scam this is.
A lot has changed in 3 years…how many decently equipped compacts are you buying for less than $26K these days?
If you’re on a budget why did you buy new?
Budgets come in all shapes and sizes.
To cut cost I guess VW will revert to 4 wheel drum brakes vs just 2 rear drum brakes VAG are doign for their EVs? /s
Agreed that with the other comments that the Bolt already exists, but glad to see some more competition in this range! I’m not really a VW guy, but this looks like a solid option – almost certainly will have faster level 3 charging, but also a crappier infotainment / no physical buttons.
But for the price, this looks like a solid package.
I don’t know so I have to ask. What is “Up!”?
Not much. What’s Up! with you?
(Seriously, Google it. It’s VW’s adorable little city car they sell in Europe. Even available in a GTI model.)
If only there were a place on the internet to search for information based only on a few keywords….
See no up in it either.
Okay this kind of rules. I’ve thought the entire time that Volkswagen should make what’s essentially an electric GTI. That’s a package that works for like 95% people if they’re being honest with themselves and VW actually knows how to make an engaging front wheel drive car. Plus the GTI name carries some street cred with it and is maybe not a household name but it’s certainly not far off from it.
This gets…close to that and I’d have to assume that a GTI trim is probably also in the works as it would be foolish for VW to not cash in on the small but strong amount of performance credibility they have, a la the Mach E “Mustang”. If they could bump it up to 300ish horsepower, give it an LSD, and a better suspension they’d be cooking with gas…and honestly I’d consider one.
This also removes the “VW ICE powertrain” conundrum from the equation and the infinite headaches that come along with it, which is a massive plus….but the question remains as to what sort of electronic gremlins you’ll wind up doing battle with as the car ages, because if there are people that can figure out how to make EVs unreliable it’s almost certainly Ze Germans.
All I want is for VW to take the e-Golf and give it better range. I would’ve been perfectly happy with a MK7.5 e-Golf with like 300-400mi of range rather than the pitiful 120ish the 2019 model gets. Really like the tech in it though. It’s all the car most people need. Very happy to see this enter the fold! Make it a wagon and it might just replace my MK7.5 wagon!
“That’s a package that works for like 95% people if they’re being honest with themselves”
– if this was how the market actually worked, we wouldn’t be experiencing the incredible embiggening of the entire U.S. private vehicle fleet as we are now. People definitely do NOT buy while being ‘honest with themselves’; no point in expecting that to change.
I’m not sure about that. Consumer trends come and go, and often mirror economic and historical developments. Right now, we’re in a Reagan/Dallas/Falcon Crest phase, where conspicuous consumption is a virtue. But the writing is on the wall as a certain generation ages out. Y & Z don’t buy stuff to impress the neighbors, they buy stuff to impress themselves.
Also, as EV adoption accelerates, people are figuring out that size, weight, and height take a bigger bite out of a battery than they do out of a gas tank. Aero is king, and the easiest way to make a car more aero is to lower it.
So we’ll return to small, practical cars, just like we have in the past. It will just take some time.
“So we’ll return to small, practical cars, just like we have in the past. It will just take some time.”
This is wishful thinking IMO.
Only severe and prolonged economic downturns combined with elevated oil prices have ever caused Americans to downsize. While it’s not impossible that it happens again, the nature of EVs means the impact is probably lessened. Yes small cars are more efficient per mile, but they can’t carry as big a battery. There isn’t the constant pressure of paying $100+ weekly at the gas pump to remind you how inefficient your vehicle is either. And even something like the Hummer EV gets 50 mpge.
That’s the one thing that worries me. The VAG is incapable of making a car’s electronics, either the wiring/hardware or the software. Even if they miraculously get the power train to work, anything electrical will fail.
I think the problem VW / Toyota are trying to solve.. VW got the last CEO fired, but Toyota hired Jeff Kuffner. It seems industry wide they like to use Qualcomm, so we all know how locked in they are (think Android cellphones). Like it or not Tesla played it smart with x86 and linux, they can switch CPU when they want to (they switched from Intel to Atom).
I’m paying attention to this, but with the resigned air of “Oh, great. Yet another car that we’re never going to see stateside.”
I had the same thought. I’d buy one and I’m sure a handful of other people would but the American obsession with bigger is better doesn’t give me high hopes for this coming here. I would love to be wrong though.
I’m on the other side of the fence from this – the Bolt is something we’re *never* going to see in Australia.
This has more of a chance of going global, so is more relevant to my interests.
This is the exact kind of thing I’d love to have for my commute.
IPad explosion interior aside, THIS is the electric car I want (footprint of a Honda Fit, interior size of a Golf). And it’ll likely not come here
“Even if you couldn’t be bothered by most electric cars, you’ll want to pay attention now.”
Despite the fawning tone of this article, I’m still wondering how this is appreciably different than a Chevy Bolt? Range, price, and power are all basically the same as a Chevy you’ve been able to buy for the last 7 years. Sorry if I’m not blown away by the new ground being broken here.
Maybe I’m just in a salty mood over the Ram SRT-10 catching strays.
It’s probably smaller, but otherwise yes I agree. I’m a big fan of the first gen bolt, the new one is ugly but still a good car
I would caveat that with “except for the seat ergonomics, which are typical GM economy car”. If they could just get the seats right, it would be so much better.
How is it different from a Bit? Well, this interior looks awful. Did somebody glue an iPad to the center? Ugh.
Yeah, I just don’t think U.S. buyers would care. Same thing with the ID.3, I think most buyers wouldn’t see it as anything more than another electric hatchback. This being even smaller is in a segment that hasn’t had meaningful sales volume here for years – but it’s also priced like a much bigger Honda Civic, which more says to me EVs are still expensive.
Know what the Bolt has and the ID.2 doesn’t? A rear door shutline that follows the rear wheel arch. I don’t know why this is the automotive design feature I have chosen to fetishize, but here we are. Too bad taillights were already taken.
If the Chevy Bolt had the MEB platform’s charging curve, I’d be fawning over it instead.
I think they are moving to cylinderical cells from pouch style.. so maybe soon?
Pouch cells can charge fast (example: E-Tron). It’s the rest of the pack holding it back.
GM’s Ultium packs use cylindrical cells and are a big upgrade, but I’ve heard rumors GM may just discontinue the Bolt once the Ultium-powered Equinox is out.
Don’t let the saltiness obscure the real fact that it’s possible to be excited about having more than one option in this category!
Not everything needs to be a halo vehicle or an innovation showcase.
“Not everything needs to be a halo vehicle or an innovation showcase.”
I agree with you, but the tone of the article implies that this is one.
THE MOST IMPORTANT CONCEPT OF THE YEAR
THE SPECS ARE INCREDIBLE
THE ONE WE’VE ALL BEEN WAITING FOR
etc etc etc
The Bolt is a great size at an awesome price; I’m a fan. But it’s starting to get old. It doesn’t fast-charge on the level of many of its competitors. It’s still an awesome car, but the EV specs are moving forward. Worst of all, GM seems to point you to the Equinox EV instead, not something similarly small to replace the Bolt.
This is European pricing, meaning unlike in the US, taxes are included. €25k is Golf money- that’s basically what they’re saying.
This is the Mk.9 Golf, I’m quite sure of it. I think the Mk.8 will soldier on in Europe for a bit with this car also on sale, and they might well brand it as the ‘ID.Golf’ or something, but this car is definitely fitting into that position in their lineup.
People *always* just put the price in a converter, whilst ignoring the fact that European prices have 15-20% VAT already included. A Golf GTI in Germany starts at €41k ($44k US). It starts at $30k in the USA. The German one seems better specced so it’s never an exact conversion anyway, but prices in the US and Europe can’t just be easily converted based on the headline figure.
Since I don’t own any motor vehicles newer than 11 years old, this is going to come off as “old-man-yells-at-cloud”, but if screens are really going to be the way things are from here on out, could the manufacturers at least make some sort of effort to incorporate said screens into a dashboard format we’ve all come to recognize and love, rather than the method we apparently are leaning into now of seemingly affixing My First Tablet to the car via self-tapping screws?
Agreed, Screens alone killed any notion of this finally being a EV I could get behind. Seems these days I will be stuck with a car made from 2015 or older. I do NOT want screens or a backup camera.
A backup camera, and the screen that goes with it, has been mandated on all US cars since 2018. I hope you’re old enough that you won’t have to daily a 40 year-old car!
I would love to daily a 40 year old car. I loved my 83 civic and 87 cavalier Z-24.
I absolutely love the backup camera. I have a Fit, and it’s invariably parked between two Suburbans. The car would have been wiped out multiple times without the camera. I have no understanding of not wanting one. P.S. mine has LaneWatch too, and I love it as well.
As for tacked on tablets, I don’t see the issue here either. I actually think it makes sense for sightlines, an I like how they look.
I guess that’s what opinions are for.
Exactly. When they announced the F150 Lightning and I saw the “base” model had a proper integrated screen I was like, “wait, you want people to pay MORE for that stupid tablet setup?”
“…any motor vehicles newer than 11 years old…”
My newest motor vehicle is forty years old, so either you’ve still got a fair amount of time left before achieving “old-man-yells-at-cloud” status or I’m far more out of touch than I think I… No, wait, I believe I just answered my own question.
Actually, he’s on the shiny side of the average, which is like 14 years now.
I am not a huge fan of screens, but I think they are fine if done well. What I hate is the shit just tacked on, and sticking out of the dash! I don’t want to clean around that! I don’t want to worry about lumber/skis/kids feet hitting it and breaking it off.