The best new EV sedan is the all-new VW ID.7, a luxurious EV performance sedan with a range of up to 435 miles between charges, some cutting edge technology, and a powerful and efficient 282-horsepower engine capable of launching 0-60 in around 6 seconds.
It arrives in North America in mid-2024 as a 2025 model.
That’s also when the eagerly-awaited and renamed VW ID.Buzz, the all-new electric version of the iconic VW Microbus, is due in the United States, after going on sale in Europe and China in late 2023.
I have fond memories of an overland trip across Europe and North Africa in the original VW Microbus many years ago – read about it here.
But I digress.
The ID7 will be VW’s flagship EV, with a price to match. Cost is expected to be at least $50,000 when prices are announced closer to launch.
That means the ID.7 will compete with such popular current EV sedans as the Tesla Model 3, award-winning Hyundai Ioniq 6, Polestar 3, a couple of Mercedes-Benz EQS models and the BMW I7.
VW ID.7 is Built on VW’s Global Platform
Since this is a global vehicle, designed to be sold in VW markets around the world, the 8 a.m. news conference launch I attended in NYC was timed to be live-streamed also to audiences in Germany, China and elsewhere.
The ID.7 It uses the company’s MEB platform, which stands for Mobile Electric Drive, and is used also to standardize such features as electronic controls and even how EVs are produced. The technology is shared with several VW sister companies, including Audi.
It boasts a more powerful electric motor than the ID.4 crossover, already on sale in North America, and more luxurious features including massaging seats and additional voice-assisted controls. There is a single motor driving the rear wheels.
Jeffrey Lear, VW Product Manager, told me the ID.7 is for a more affluent customer than the ID.4, perhaps even a more adventurous one, since the new model will have first-ever driving modes such as sport and performance.
Controls are on the console, and there are no paddle-shifters, as on some other EVs with similar driving modes.
VW ID.7 Fabulous Features
A top selling point may be its long-distance range. The basic model will have a range of around 320 miles. It’s the upgrade choice that offers the longer-range of another 50-ish miles.
The VW ID.7 will feature a panoramic self-tinting panoramic view, a generous 15-inch screen and reclining front seats with massage as standard features. It’s inviting enough to lure you into a nap – when you are parked, of course – lulled to blissful escape with the reclining seats massaging you gently.
The available electro-chromic dimming panoramic sunroof is something currently offered only by premium competitors. It can be switched between opaque and transparent settings by touch control. Like many other functions in the ID.7, the roof can also be operated by means of natural voice commands, using the new IDA voice assistant.
The optional front seats are also a new development available for the first time in a Volkswagen. They offer adaptive Climatronic cooling or heating with a drying function.
Another option is a 700-watt sound system from Harman Kardon, with 14 high-end loudspeakers, including a front center speaker and a trunk-mounted subwoofer, for a concert-like audio experience.
There are other appealing features, too.
The upgraded navigation/entertainment system will let you place icons to control your favorite functions where you want them, just like you do with the apps on your phone. And, some functions can be done with a swipe, also similar to what we are used to on our phones.
My favorite feature, though, is what designer Lear described as an “augmented reality” heads-up display.
This projects what’s coming up in front of you, such as a left turn, with ever-larger and more compelling graphics, so you can’t miss it. It promises to help the driver keep focused, even when the kids are squabbling in the backseat.
Heads-up displays are a huge driver-safety assist. The one in the ID.7 takes it to a new level, and my fingers are crossed the technology will be shared by other WV models.
And you have to love the new Park Assist Pro with Memory Function as optional equipment. There are three automated modes which can can be activated depending on the situation.
A unique feature of Volkswagen’s electric vehicles is the memory function. With this, the ID.7 continuously records the last 55 yards driven and thus the parking situation. The driver either remains in the ID.7 or monitors the parking procedure from outside the vehicle using the smartphone app.
Another favorite new feature is the voice control. Say, for example, “Hello, VW, my hands are cold,” and the vehicle turns on the heated steering wheel. Take that, Siri and Alexa.
Of course, you can also pre-set the car to warm up or cool down before you leave the driveway, so it’s at the optimum temperature for you and any passengers. That’s a feature shared by all EVs, not just the ID7.
Here’s Looking at You
At first glance, the ID.7 looks like an updated version of the much-beloved gas-powered Passat, which has been phased out. Although it looks like a sedan, the VW ID.7 has a hatchback-like rear, which provides both ample cargo space and easier access to it.
The ID.7 will be assembled at its factory in Emden, Germanym for Europe, Canada and the USA, so it does not qualify for the $7,500 tax credit. In China, the corresponding ID.7 models are being produced locally.
The less expensive ID.4 is built at the company’s factory LEED-certified factory in Chattanooga, so does qualify for the $7,500 tax credit, reducing its $46,000 starting price even further.
The new ID.7 is one of 10 new electric models to be launched by Volkswagen worldwide by 2026, giving the company what it claims will be the widest range of electric vehicles compared with its mid-price competitors.
The new ID.7 will be produced in the Volkswagen plant in Emden for the European and North American markets. In China, the corresponding ID.7 models will be produced locally.
A version of this article appeared originally on A Girl’s Guide To Cars, where I have been a regular contributor for a decade.
ecoXplorer Evelyn Kanter is a journalist with 20+ years of experience as a newspaper and magazine writer, radio & TV news producer & reporter, and author of guidebooks and smartphone apps – all focusing on travel, automotive, the environment and your rights as a consumer.
ecoXplorer Evelyn Kanter currently serves as President of the International Motor Press Assn. (IMPA), a former Board Member of the Society of American Travel Writers (SATW) and a current member of the North American Travel Journalists Assn. (NATJA).
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Copyright (C) Evelyn Kanter