German giant Volkswagen has revealed the ID.LIFE concept car at the Munich show. It forms part of the company’s Accelerate strategy which aims to make sustainable mobility accessible to more buyers by 2025. That means the ID.LIFE, which should reach showrooms as the rumoured ID.2 in the same year, will represent a new, more affordable price point in the ID range. VW has indicated it will start at approximately 20,000 euros.
The guff says the ID.LIFE is a ‘small car for the urban environment, centred around people and communal experiences’.
The concept is said to be extremely flexible, “the ID.LIFE can become a mini cinema or a gaming centre, for instance, or simply be used for relaxing in the open air”. That’s because the concept has a removable roof.
According to VW’s big cheese, Ralf Brandstätter; “The ID.LIFE is our vision of next-generation fully electric urban mobility. The concept car provides a preview of an ID. model in the small car segment that we will be launching in 2025, priced at around 20,000 euros. This means we are making electric mobility accessible to even more people.”
He went on to say that younger customers are the focus of this car, and as such “the car of the future will be about lifestyle and personal expression. The customer of tomorrow won’t simply want to get from A to B; they will be much more interested in the experiences that a car can offer. The ID.LIFE is our answer to this.”
The design is described as “strikingly clear, pared-down and high-quality”. In a move that is probably more to do with cost containment than design ‘decorative elements and add-on parts are dispensed with, as is any complex mix of materials’.
As to the bits that make it go, it sits on a version of Volkswagen’s modular electric drive matrix (MEB) platform, one that has been optimised for small cars and that drives the front wheels. The concept uses a 172kW motor, a 57kWh battery and has a claimed range of 400km.
We don’t imagine the production version will be quite so well endowed, especially at the projected price tag.
VW says its MEB is the most scalable electrical architecture in the industry. “We’re just beginning to tap into the potential of MEB. Performance, charging capacity and range will continue to improve with each new model and software update.”
The interior features flexible seating solutions; the front seat bench can be completely folded down, as can the rear seat bench to make a bed. The rear seats can also be folded down to maximise luggage storage. The concept is fitted with a video game console and projector, as well as a projection screen that extends from the dash panel.
Cameras are used in place of traditional mirrors, there are no drive levers, just touch points on the steering wheel to initiate the ‘gears’ and there’s a BYO touchscreen policy; you can integrate your own smart device to access functions like sat nav and entertainment.
It’s all part of VW’s grand electrification plan that will see 70 per cent of its European sales being electric by 2030 and 50 per cent in markets like the US and China.