Volkswagen's only recently revealed the production version of its ID 3 but as with any good engineer, VW R&D boss Frank Welsch is already thinking about ways to improve it.
He said: “There’s still room for optimisation. Just like in combustion-engined cars, look at how CO2 has come down and down and down because engineers have optimised. The ID 3 is a huge step but it’s not the end.” Here are his three key areas.
“People need range,” Welsch said. Despite the top-end ID 3 offering 341 miles of range, Welsch believes people want more.
“We won’t do this by giving people a bigger battery because it’s more weight and more cost. It’s about battery density improving,” he said.
“It is not enough to change the drivetrain to electric. We have more room and it drives like a GTI right now. We need other USPs you don’t get in other cars. This first step is a good step but we’re going to make speech recognition more intelligent. We can also make much more use of the augmented reality head-up display in the ID 3.
“We are the first ones to have this, even in higher segment cars. We can improve it by software upgrades because the hardware is in the car. Now, we have a few situations where you can use it: navigation mode, lane keeping, showing snowflakes on the street if the temperature is below four degrees. We have to assess which situations are useful. We don’t want to do video games.”
“People love performance cars and people love to spend money on it. We should have this in the electric world as well. This is why we do the ID R [race car] – to show how the performance of electromobility can be even better than classic ones. We need four-wheel drive and a performance e-motor.”
An R version of the electric ID 3 will arrive in under five years, using four-wheel drive and performance e-motors, promising even better acceleration than the current Golf GTI.