The fact is that the I.D. combines the digitally connected world with electric drive, if required, and heralds a new era of fully automated driving. Analogously, this resulted in a visionary design for the electric cars of the future. It puts the spotlight on the individual: it is positive, honest, and fascinating to look at. Volkswagen has made electric and fully automated driving - the factors that will change everything about mobility - conspicuous with its innovative design language, in the interior, too, where the ambience of the conventional driving environment has been transformed into the interactive centre of a mobile lounge - a supremely versatile Open Space. The spaciousness of this area and the intuitive, clear functionality allow you to experience mobility in a completely new way.
The I.D. represents the world of "the day after tomorrow". But the latest generation of the e-Golf, with a zero-emission range of up to 300 kilometres and new gesture control, will be on the road "tomorrow". The world of "today" is also embodied in state-of-the-art Volkswagens like the new Tiguan, which has launched the digitisation of the car interior with its Active Info Display and head-up display. We thus see three eras represented at once with the Tiguan, the e-Golf and the I.D. concept car, which together point the way from the present to the future - here at the Volkswagen booth.
The I.D. is the first vehicle to showcase Volkswagen's iconic new design language for compact electric vehicles. The clear, iconic exterior and interior design - which puts the spotlight on the individual in every respect as well as the zero-emission drive - together preview the year 2020. For absolute clarity: I.D. is, today, a concept car; but I.D. is coming. We can expect to see the I.D. on our roads within the next four years, and its fully automated driving capability gives us a glimpse of the year 2025. And so the I.D. is an automotive protagonist of the progressive, forward-looking Volkswagen brand strategy "Think New." This strategy is based on four central areas of innovation, which are also reflected in the new Volkswagen design approach for electric vehicles and, thus, in the I.D.:
- Smart Sustainability - Volkswagen is advancing the development of innovative high-volume electric cars;
- Automated Driving - Volkswagen is going to make cars even safer and more comfortable thanks to automated driving;
- Intuitive Usability - Volkswagen has put its focus on vehicles that are intuitive to operate and feature new display and control concepts;
- Connected Community - Volkswagen will interconnect humans, cars and the environment with a Volkswagen user identity, in future.
For Volkswagen, the world premiere of the iconic I.D. in Paris - with its iconic, fresh design - marks a watershed. This car is as revolutionary as the Beetle was seven decades ago and the first Golf was 40 years ago - which went on to become two of the world's most successful cars of all time. The I.D. has the potential to make history, too. It has been designed to be a compact all-rounder that will help to make electric cars the 'everyday' choice, with its impressive electric range and an attractive price. A car in which the driver can activate the fully automated mode "I.D. Pilot" just by touching the Volkswagen logo on the steering wheel. With this, the electrically adjustable and retractable steering wheel disappears into the dashpad to form a single entity flush with the dashboard, boosting the lounge feeling in fully automated mode of the Open Space concept - the all new interior layout of the I.D., because the architecture of the drivetrain with an electric motor on the rear axle, and a high-voltage battery in the floor of the vehicle, liberates more space, more light, greater flexibility and more freedom than was ever possible in a car with a length of slightly over 4 metres. The I.D. is positioned as a compact electric car with which Volkswagen aims to expand its range of high-volume models in parallel to existing global best sellers such as the Polo, Golf, Tiguan and Passat.
The idea is that anyone who drives a Volkswagen in the future will be given their own Volkswagen ID. The ID is an individual profile, in which the personal seat and air conditioning settings, the favourite radio stations and songs, the sound system settings, the exterior sounds, the configuration of the navigation system, and the type of ambient lighting, as well as the contact details of the driver's friends and business associates, are saved. This profile can be securely accessed via the cloud, enabling the I.D. to recognise the legitimate user by their smartphone - the Digital Key - and know who is about to get behind the wheel.
With the I.D. you'll be at home on the road because, with Volkswagen Home-Net, it will be possible to interconnect your car and home. For example: using cameras in the house you will be able to check whether everything is OK at home from the car. What if your wife, husband, child, girlfriend or boyfriend has forgotten their key? No problem! Just call and look into the camera, and I.D. sends the picture to the Active Info Display, so that the driver can open the front door using an app.
Pretty soon it could even become perfectly normal to receive parcels on the road, with the new Delivery Service in the boot of your car acting as a mailbox. To put this into perspective: studies show that millions of parcels sent in Europe could alternatively be delivered to the boot of a Volkswagen parked anywhere between Helsinki and Lisbon. If the car owners aren't at home, I.D. would be able to receive parcels simply and efficiently, or allow them to be collected. The parcel delivery agent is able to locate the car by GPS and is granted temporary permission to open the boot via an app. The car's owner is then notified via an app or e-mail as soon as the parcel has been delivered and the boot is locked again. Volkswagen is currently working with international logistics service providers to implement this innovative concept.
What is clear from every angle is the I.D. adheres to a new design language for compact Volkswagen electric cars. As is clear from every angle. As already outlined, it puts the spotlight on the individual. Cars like the I.D. aren't mere machines, but cars that react interactively, and this is reflected in a design that shows a high degree of empathy. Everything is neatly laid out: ample space, maximum precision, a charismatic front end, iconic C-pillars, flowing, sculpted surfaces and expressive wheels are just a few of the design criteria of Volkswagen's electro-mobility.
An electric car doesn't need any large cooling grilles, which changes everything when it comes to the design of the front end. Well, almost everything, because Volkswagen also managed to do without cooling grilles on the front of the Beetle and the "Bulli" Volkswagen bus in their original designs. Details like the headlights were of paramount importance. The key significance of these "eyes" remains unchanged to this day, but the static headlights of yesteryear have given way to interactive LED elements on the I.D., to bring the Volkswagen of the future to life. With their completely new design, they dominate the front end: the mobile "eyes", which are framed by a C-shaped light signature, react to other road users. The large, sculpted bumpers as well as the diffusers in "Anodized Blue" also give the I.D. charisma. The transparent illuminated Volkswagen logo in the front section emphasises the I.D.'s quality and class.
From the side profile it is apparent that the I.D. is characterised by breathtaking proportions and a new stylistic idiom. The design is characterised by high precision, clarity and vision. The voluptuous, flowing surfaces of the side profile below the character line merge elegantly into a single, homogeneous surface.
The new stylistic idiom corresponds with innovative technical solutions: for example, the I.D. has no rigid B-pillars. Instead, the front and rear doors form a protective unit when closed. The rear doors open backwards with a swivel mechanism, opening the way to the Open Space which is very comfortable to climb into. We have also said farewell to the door mirrors. Their job will be done by cameras in the car of the future, which are integrated in the front wings as little high-tech features. The powerful silhouette is perfectly rounded off by white and blue 20-inch alloy wheels with blue low rolling resistance tyres.
The boot lid, which extends across the full width of the car, is contrasted in black. At the sides, the large rear window is framed by vertical aerodynamic elements and at the base by the strikingly narrow horizontal LED rear lights. The I.D.'s bumper is a prime example of the avant-garde design of Volkswagen's future electric cars, which looks as if the bumper were made of a stylish piece of aluminium or a translucent block of ice in a single piece. Right at the bottom of the car's rear section is a blue diffuser. The look is neat and tidy, just like the narrow strip of LED rear lights that wrap around to the flanks and the illuminated Volkswagen logo between them and the transition from the boot lid to the panoramic roof, which is framed in gloss black. You only have to see it once from this angle for the stunning new I.D. to stand out in your memory.
The four-door I.D. is 4,100 mm long and, thus, 155 mm shorter than a Golf. This concept car is 1,800 mm wide and 1,530 mm high. Between the front and rear sections the I.D. has a remarkable wheelbase of 2,750 mm; which is - despite the shorter exterior length - 130 mm more than the Golf. In fact, the wheelbase is closer to that of the Passat. In contrast, the body overhangs are extremely modest.
Interactive light elements alter the look and feel of the concept car, depending on the mode that the I.D. is in. What is more, the I.D. communicates with its environment using light. The LED light from the headlights interactively mimics the human eye (interactive spotlight), with the headlights reacting to their environment, for instance by looking in the direction of the driver as he approaches the I.D.