Volkswagen Philippines has discussed during its round table discussion with the media today its plans for the Philippine market. Earlier in 2019, the Volkswagen brand revamped itself as it looks towards its electric future. Of course, with that shift in branding and marketing campaigns to something more vibrant and youth-oriented comes the launch of its new lineup of electric vehicles (EV) in the global market, the Volkswagen ID.3 and ID.4. As Volkswagen Philippines realigns itself to offer once again its global models, the German automaker will not just be offering more global models like the upcoming T-Cross, but also the ID.3 and ID.4 sooner rather than later.
The Volkswagen ID.3 was first unveiled in late 2019 and it then went on sale in 2020. Riding on the German automaker’s new MEB platform for electric vehicles, the ID.3 shares roughly the same footprint as the Volkswagen Golf. The electric hatchback comes with two different electric motors powering the rear wheels, a 201 hp version and a 147 hp version, with both having the same torque figure at 310 Nm. The base 147 hp motor comes with a 45 kWh battery pack that offers 330 km of range, while the 201 hp version comes with either a 58 kWh version that’s good for 420 km or a 77 kWh model that can travel as far as 550 km in a full charge.
Thanks to its price undercutting the Tesla Model 3 in most markets in Europe, the Volkswagen ID.3 became Europe’s second-best-selling car in December 2020, putting it a notch below the popular Volkswagen Golf. While the Tesla Model 3 still beats the Volkswagen ID.3 in terms of sales for the entire 2020, the mere fact that the ID.3 only went on sale in the second half of 2020 and yet became Europe’s 3rd best-selling EV for the year 2020 is an amazing feat on its own.
Of course, with the popularity of crossovers and SUVs, it was expected for Volkswagen to unveil an electric crossover. Called the ID.4, the Tiguan-sized electric crossover became popular to American consumers when it was launched first in the North American market. As a matter of fact, the US$43,995 1st Edition model immediately sold out, even beating the reservation numbers of the entry-level variants.
Two variants are on offer for the ID.4, a base 201-hp and 309 Nm version that drives the rear wheels and comes with an 82 kWh battery pack that’s food for 402 km. The range-topping model produces 302 hp which will be released later this year, though no battery sizes were revealed yet for this model.
Now, because of the MEB architecture and the lack of a gasoline engine, the Volkswagen ID.4 has a much longer wheelbase than the similarly-sized Tiguan, which enables occupants to have more room.
Volkswagen Philippines did not announce when these EVs will be offered in our market, let alone a timeframe on when these two might be offered. Primarily hurdles for Volkswagen include the lack of public chargers, just to name a few. Though rest assured that as electric vehicles continue to gain momentum in our market, both the public and private sector may eventually work hand-in-hand in making electric vehicles a viable option for many Filipinos.