Price, fuel economy and range, finance and depreciation

Those waiting for a breakthrough on usable range before jumping into EV ownership probably won’t jump too hard at the Volkswagen ID 3, but it does represent progress.

Our test car, with the mid- range 58kWh battery, returned real- world touring-test energy economy of 3.4mpkWh so would put a whisker under 200 miles between charges at a UK-typical 60-70mph cruise. If the 77kWh version got within 10% of the same efficiency, you could expect just under 250 miles at motorway speed, rising no doubt to nearer 300 at a slower cruise. Not bad – especially considering the chilly temperatures in which we tested the car.

The ID 3 performs well against the Kia e-Niro and Peugeot e-2008 for forecasted residual values. Very impressive.

Many car makers are pruning their trim levels but VW seems to have other ideas. The ID 3 range opens in £31,670 Life spec, then progresses through Business, Family, Tech and Max before culminating in the £42,290 Tour, for which you’re still cheekily expected to pay an extra £219 for a 230V charging cable.

In fairness, equipment levels are high across the board – even for the basic ID 3 Life – and you can subtract the government-funded £2500 from those list prices for all sub-£35,000 versions.

The aim is clearly to offer as broad a spread of forms an ID 3 can take as possible, and thus cannily cater to both those considering a sub-£30,000 Nissan Leaf and those who like the look of the entry-level Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus, as well as everybody in between. However, the ID 3 seems better value at the foot of the range, where LED headlights, heated seats (and steering wheel), adaptive cruise control and the 10.0in infotainment system are all standard.

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All models are capable of CCS rapid charging at 100kW, which is usefully quick if unexceptional in 2021. (Cars with the biggest battery pack charge at up to 125kW.) For home charging, VW offers either its 7.2kW ID Charger Pro or Pod Point’s equivalent.