Volkswagen ID Aero concept evolves into crucial production car for 2023; estate and hot GTX to follow.
The all-new Volkswagen ID 7 will be officially revealed at the Shanghai Auto Show on 18 April after being closely previewed as this camouflaged prototype at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
The ID 7, which had previously been known as Aero B as a concept car and in development, will be offered first as this five-door liftback, and in time as a wagon, too.
It is the sixth model to be launched in the ID range and will initially sit alongside the Volkswagen Arteon and Volkswagen Passat, the latter of which will only be offered as an estate in its next generation. In time it will become VW’s only offering in Europe’s shrinking D-segment as no further versions of the Arteon and Passat are due once the switch to EVs is made.
“Globally, the saloon segment is disappearing, even in China,” VW boss Thomas Schäfer told Automotive Daily Network partner Autocar. “In China, it’s already happening in the low-price saloons. It is going down in Europe; it’s never been huge, except for a handful of markets, maybe Turkey, but we will definitely not bring a lot of saloons. This is it [ID 7] and we converge onto that when we let go of the combustion engine.”
The MEB-based ID 7 is 4940mm long, 1859mm wide and 1529mm high, with a wheelbase of 2969mm shared with the Volkswagen ID Buzz. This makes the ID 7 longer than both the Passat and the Arteon.
The CES show car wears the ID 7’s production bodywork but it is wrapped in a special QR code-inspired camouflage to hide its final styling. A full reveal will happen in Shanghai before the ID 7 goes on sale later in the year.
The camouflage is called Electroluminescent, and is made up of 40 layers of paint. This then has an electric current placed through it, to let the 22 different sections of the car light up.
VW has disclosed few technical details ahead of the ID 7’s full reveal. However, the company confirmed that it would be offered with a range of up to 700km. This will be in a larger-battery model, a size of battery yet to be offered in an ID car. Initially, the ID 7 will come with the existing largest 77kWh pack.
It will initially be two-wheel drive with a four-wheel-drive GTX model confirmed to launch in due course – ultimately giving a powertrain line-up that mirrors that of its main rivals: the Tesla Model 3, Polestar 2 and Hyundai Ioniq 6.
The Aero name used previously referred to its super-slippery shape, and a drag coefficient as low as 0.23 is expected for the final production model.
Inside, there are notable developments and improvements over the ID models to date. The infotainment system has been overhauled to bring temperature controls to the main homepage of the 15in touchscreen, and the physical temperature slider bar below the screen has at last been illuminated to allow it to be useful at night. There are also smart air vents that begin to cool or heat the car when it detects the keyholder is close, and also heat the steering wheel as needed. An augmented reality head-up display is standard.
The ID 7 will be built at the firm’s Emden factory in Germany alongside the Volkswagen ID 4, and exported to all markets except China from there. Chinese cars will be built locally by VW’s two different joint venture partners there.