The 2021 VW ID.4 is a fully electric compact crossover with space for up to five and a range of up to 250 miles. The ID.4 compares to the Tesla Model Y and Ford Mustang Mach-E, but it’s priced lower to compete with bestselling compact crossovers such as the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and Subaru Forester. The 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 offers a refreshing design supplemented by innovative lighting, a comfortable, surprisingly spacious interior, a solid set of active-safety features, and enough driving range to make road trips possible.
That’s actually the focus of our review, how would the 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 perform in the real world on a camping trip where charging is still in its infancy. The ID.4 is just slightly shorter in length and height than the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V, yet inside it can feel more spacious. The front seats offer lots of long-legged comfort, and two adults can get comfortable in back. Sightlines are good, storage is plentiful, and the low cargo floor offers 30.3 cubic feet of space with the rear seatback up or 64.2 cubic feet with it flipped down.
For range, here’s how our 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 did over a 11 day trip covering over 1500 miles…
Day 1- Packwood to Rimrock Lake: 26 miles took 16% of battery charge (Average 1.63mi/1% of charge)
Day 2- Rimrock Lake to Vancouver: 156 miles took 55% of battery charge (Average 2.84mi/1% of charge)
Day 3- Portland to Rimrock: 177 miles took 82% of battery charge (Average 2.16mi/1% of charge)
Day 4- Rimrock to Yakima: 46 miles took 12% of battery charge (Average 3.83mi/1% of charge)
Day 4- Yakima to Goldendale: 70 miles took 35% of battery charge (Average 2.0mi/1% of charge)
Day 5- Goldendale to PDX: 119 miles took 54% of battery charge (Average 2.2mi/1% of charge)
Day 6- Portland to Tacoma: 132 miles took 59% of battery charge (Average 2.24mi/1% of charge)
Day 6- Tacoma to Port Angeles: 100 miles took 37% of battery charge (Average 2.7mi/1% of charge)
Day 6- Port Angeles to Sol Duc: 45 miles took 20% of battery charge (Average 2.25mi/1% of charge)
Day 7- Sol Duc to Port Angeles: 52 miles took 16% of battery charge (Average 3.25mi/1% of charge)
Day 7- Port Angeles to Sol Duc: 47 miles took 16% of battery charge (Average 2.94mi/1% of charge)
Day 8- Sol Duc to Neah Bay to Punch Bowl to Sol Duc: 150 miles took 59% of battery charge (Average 2.54mi/1% of charge)
Day 9- Sol Duc to Kalaloch: 85 miles took 23% of battery charge (Average 3.7mi/1% of charge)
Day 10- Kalaloch to Hoh to Kalaloch: 100 miles took 36% of battery charge (Average 2.78mi/1% of charge)
Day 11- Kalaloch to Portland: 211 miles took 88% of battery charge (Average 2.4mi/1% of charge)
Overall we averaged 2.63 miles for every 1% of battery charge. Why is this important you ask? Based on 100% battery charge it means the 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 averages 263 miles per full charge with 3 people, fully loaded to the gills, going 75-80mph. It’s impressive and proves that you really can road trip with an ID.4.
For charging, of the opportunities for DC Fast Charging, here’s how the 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 performed…
Charging for 44min netted us 79% of battery charge
Charging for 12min netted us 8% of battery charge
Charging for 22min netted us 45% of battery charge
Charging for 31min netted us 55% of battery charge
Charging for 22min netted us 23% of battery charge
Overall, we DC fast charged for 131 minutes which gave us 210% of battery charge which equates out to 1.6% of battery per minute. Using the above average of 2.63 miles per 1%, we gained 552 miles of range which took about a little over two hours. Now would you take an hour to gas up your car? Probably not, but if you’re doing it in small increments or while you’re already somewhere shopping, it becomes almost a non-issue. The rest of the time we charged at the campsite, a nearby resort, and often at state parks; it was much easier that even I expected.
Over our trip we found ride comfort is good, and isolation from the road noise you tend to notice more in EVs is superb. One EV cliche lacking here is “instant torque.” The ID.4 is quick and quiet, but by no means shocking in its acceleration. It makes up for that with excellent steering and handling, with a sense of balance and poise that’s above and beyond what you’ll find in gasoline crossovers this size. Initial crash testing is promising, with the IIHS bestowing a Top Safety Pick+ designation on the ID.4 for withstanding and mitigating crashes with its standard automatic emergency braking.
The 2021 VW ID.4 starts at $45,190 for the 1st Edition model that goes on sale first. Top features for the Pro S and 1st Edition include a panoramic glass roof, power tailgate, power front seats, power mirrors, and a larger 12.0-inch infotainment touchscreen. The Pro S model, which mostly parallels the equipment in the 1st Edition, starts at $45,690, but adds up to $47,190 with the Gradient package (larger 20-inch wheels, black roof, silver accents). A base Pro model will arrive late in the model year, starting at $41,190. All-wheel-drive versions of either model will cost $3,680 extra and won’t be available until later in the calendar year. VW notes that the $7,500 federal EV tax credit will apply for many buyers, as will some state incentives. That lowers the effective starting price to $33,690.
Here’s our full review: 2021 VW ID.4 Review: Nearly everything that EV buyers want
The 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 is impressive, purely for what Volkswagen has been able to achieve, giving people what they need at at price they can afford. Maybe that’s the exact modern definition of “the people’s car”. If that’s the case, the 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 is a home run, both on the merits of the ID.4 itself but also for what it represents, the new affordable modern era of transportation that you can live with every day, even on the weekends.