The production version of the Volkswagen ID GTI concept is already in development within VW’s R&D team and its boss, Kai Grünitz, said the new MEB Entry platform on which it will be based “offers enough power and acceleration to give you the GTI feeling when you drive this car”.
Grünitz confirmed that a drivable prototype already exists, and it is only marginally smaller than the Munich show concept car revealed earlier this week - and not quite as aggressive in its styling.
The VW engineers are working on giving the GTI production car “an agile steering feel and a very smooth way of driving it through the curves” and an electronic differential to boost handling.
Grünitz added: “We want to make it agile, really direct and so you can feel the road with the damper settings. It’ll be fast but smooth and it’ll need more power than the ID 2 All.”
It will use the same-sized battery as the Volkswagen ID 2 on which it is based, but there will be hardware changes to ensure the right voltage and cooling is delivered. The motors will be upgraded and given more power.
The model will be given its own bespoke sound inspired by the internal-combustion-engined GTIs of today, but the driver will have the option of turning this off. However, it will not be given a simulated gearbox feel, as has featured on the Hyundai Ioniq 5 N hot hatch.
The feisty yet affordable Volkswagen ID GTI concept harks back to the original Golf GTI both in spirit and styling! pic.twitter.com/kLfCQdtAXE
— Autocar (@autocar) September 5, 2023
Grünitz added that VW is also working on two or three special gadgets and features that will be bespoke to the GTI that will “put a smile on your face”.
The production GTI will be one of the first new-era VWs created using the firm’s new ‘love brand’ mantra, and when asked if there were any other models that Grünitz would like to see reinvented for the electric era, he ruled out a reborn Beetle, because that car would have limited long-term market appeal.
However, he hinted that a “dream car” as a “shining star” at the top of the VW range was under consideration and that this would be a “sporty model”. Design sketches already exist of this project, said Grünitz.
A headliner at the 2023 Munich motor show, the hot hatch variant of the upcoming ID 2 is earmarked to head Volkswagen’s new entry-level electric car line-up with a front-mounted electric motor, specially tuned sport suspension, traditional GTI design elements and a price expected to start at around €30,000 (£26,000).