2021 Volkswagen ID.4 AWD Pro S proves more is better
The rear-wheel drive version of Volkswagen’s ID.4 electric compact SUV is a well-equipped and inexpensive electric crossover to meet the needs of many drivers. A little excitement is about all that’s missing, really. Oh look, here’s the 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 AWD.
Priced at $ 44,870, the 2021 ID.4 AWD Pro boasts a 107bhp front-mounted engine, for a power boost of nearly 50%. With a combined output of 295 horsepower and 339 pound-feet of torque, the all-wheel-drive version hits 60 mph in just 5.4 seconds – 2.2 seconds less than the rear-wheel-drive model. No ID.4 is going to be mistaken for a driver’s car, but the big power bump and two extra wheels that put it on the ground dramatically improve driving dynamics.
When the corners do appear, the suspension is largely fine tuned, especially given the extra 223 pounds of all-wheel drive. Both axles have anti-roll bars; there are struts in the front and the rear uses a multilink setup. When trying to push the ID.4 on hilly, twisty roads, its mass sometimes exceeds damping, and you start to feel a bit like a buoy at sea – there’s the initial compression followed by a second bob. compensatory but softer. Eventually, those with sensitive inner ears may find themselves having had a bob too many. Suffice it to say, we don’t suggest buying an ID.4 for canyon carving.
If you did, however, you would find that the steering ratio and weight are assessed well. There isn’t a lot of feedback, but the electric assist has been a big part of the course these days. It’s easy to place the ID.4 precisely on bends, and there’s no need to constantly correct in the lane, you just don’t think about it. The best part might be the turning radius, however. Placement of the steering rack in front of the front wheel centerline results in an outstanding 36.4-foot silhouette, not as tight as the RWD car’s 33.5-footer but still excellent.
In anything more than moderate braking, it’s nearly impossible to come to a smooth stop, however. The pedal offers little feedback, like pushing your foot into a memory foam pillow, and then, when you find the spot in the foam that seems to be slowing the car appropriately, the rate of deceleration suddenly changes and you are forced to push harder. But you are not sure about the hardness, because again, memory foam. Don’t read badly; the car stops easily, but your passengers may not be happy with your driving. The phenomenon probably has less to do with rear drum brakes (which VW says are better for regenerative braking gains) and more to do with the less than seamless transition from regenerative braking to friction braking.
Shifting the gear selector to “B” maximizes energy recovery when you are not on the accelerator. It’s designed to provide “one-pedal ride”, but it would be nice to have a paddle or some other way to adjust sensitivity at your fingertips.
All of the above mentioned issues might not bother the average driver. The point is, the ID.4 AWD shines as a daily driver, and a lot of that is down to its interior. Without a transmission tunnel, it is very spacious, with or without a front engine. There’s plenty of headroom and 30 cubic feet of cargo space behind the 60/40 split rear seats, which extends to an impressive 64 cubic feet with the seatbacks folded down.
There is a playful side to this airy interior which is charming, especially if you’ve gone for the heavy white plastic version. A purple light bar that must have been inspired by Michael Knight’s KITT spans the entire width of the dashboard, witnessing everything from the turns ahead in navigation to the state of the battery when it is charging. . Gimmicky, you say? Maybe, but if you haven’t figured out the accelerator and brake pedals index “Play” https://www.caranddriver.com/ “Pause”, you won’t get the rest of the ID.4.
There is also surprising luxury inside. The 12-way power seats covered in leatherette in the Pro S trim offer a massage function and the leather-wrapped steering wheel is heated. You’ll notice substandard interior plastics, especially around the dashboard and door panels, but overall the ID.4’s interior comes across as modern and minimalist.
The infotainment system uses a 10-inch center screen (12-inch in the Pro S) that’s slow and largely unintuitive, while the rest of the gear relies way too much on touch controls. You will take your eyes off the road to engage with a touch button even to adjust the mirror or lower the rear windows. We’ll say the same as we said when other manufacturers overdosed on touch everything: neat, but please bring back buttons and touch buttons ASAP.
The ID.4 AWD Pro is equipped in the same way as the rear-wheel drive version, except for a 0.6-inch suspension and a heated windshield. That’s no disappointment as the ID.4 Pro models arrive well loaded with standard features like keyless access, 19-inch wheels, and a host of driver assistance and safety systems. A tow hitch is standard and all-wheel drive is capable of towing 2,700 pounds, 500 more than the single-engine variant.
The AWD Pro S starts at $ 49,370 and adds upgraded LED headlights, power mirrors with puddle lighting, and a tailgate with hands-free operation, among other features. A $ 1,500 Gradient Package gives the AWD Pro S 20-inch wheels and a black painted roof with silver accents, including on the roof rails and C-pillars. ID.4 models are eligible for credit. federal tax of $ 7,500 and, depending on where you live, state tax credits can help lower prices even further.
The ID.4 AWD lineup suffers a bit from the extra weight and performance, but not that much. The range of the AWD Pro is estimated at 249 miles by the EPA and that of the AWD Pro S at 240 miles. It’s not quite the 260-mile range of the single-engine Pro and 250-mile Pro S, but it’s more than fair trade for the significant horsepower boost.
The ID.4 AWD is compatible with level 1, 2 and 3 charging. In real terms, that means you can use everything from household outlets to high-power Electrify America charging stations to push the juice into the on-board charger. of 11 kW. If you are using a 50 amp level charger, you can refill the ID.4 in seven and a half hours. Better yet, take advantage of VW’s three-year free fast charge offer at Electrify America stations. Volkswagen claims that when connected to a fast charger, the ID.4 can be charged from 5 to 80% in just under 40 minutes.
Ultimately, any issues we might have with the ID.4 should probably be overlooked if you’re looking for an affordable electric SUV. Why? The seriously well-equipped ID.4 AWD is all Volkswagen says it is. After factoring in potential tax credits and incentives, the ID.4 AWD Pro sits in the mid to high range of $ 30,000. And the extra punch from the second motor is a bonus that just might allay your cynicism about electric cars.
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