Update: ‘VW ID.3 Cabriolet production’ section added
Volkswagen could soon be taking the wraps off the VW ID.3 Cabriolet concept. We knew about this development since March 2021, when Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess posted a render on Twitter to map audience reactions. But now, the concept version could be revealed sooner than you think for consumers to get an actual look at the possible future derivative.
Autocar UK has reported that work at the design studio on a VW ID.3 convertible concept has started, and the lower development costs brought by the shared MEB platform makes the business case for the variant a lot more feasible.
Has to better the Golf Cabriolet
The VW Golf Cabriolet didn’t enjoy a great relationship with the car buyers. Volkswagen sold only 1,621 units of the last iteration of the Golf Cabriolet in the UK, after which it was deleted from the brand portfolio. The future of the VW ID.3 Cabriolet could be brighter given the massive push for EVs in recent years and millions of adopters desiring to switch to sustainable mobility. The smooth and quiet nature of the EV increases its overall appeal.
Despite the VW ID.3 drawing criticisms from motoring journalists due to its poor switchgear quality and infotainment with riddled software niggles, the sales numbers paint a different picture. In its first year in Europe, VW got 144,000 bookings for the ID.3 of which 70,000 were buyers new to the brand. It will be interesting to see how the VW ID.3 cabriolet does when it goes on sale.
If Diess’ March 2021 render is anything to go by, the VW ID.3 Cabriolet concept would be a two-door offering with the rest of the body identical to that of the regular ID.3. The nose will be similar with LED headlamps, an LED DRL strip merging into the central VW roundel, and an air intake integrated into the front bumper to cool the battery. The roof mechanism would fold into the rear section, so customers may not expect anything even close to the 385-litre boot space that they get in the hatch.
Interior & Features
The ID.3 comes in four variants, namely Life, Family, Max, and Tour, which offer varying equipment levels. If the VW ID.3 Cabriolet sees the light of the day, it will likely be offered with a larger battery (Pro Performance and/or Pro) and a higher variant (Max and/or Tour). For perspective, the range-topping ID.3 Tour offers 19-inch alloy wheels, 10-inch touchscreen infotainment, matrix headlamps, dual-zone ac, augmented reality head-up display and many ADAS features. Expect the ID.3 Cabriolet to pack these goodies as it would be positioned at the top-end of the lineup. That is, if it gets board approval!
VW ID.3 Cabriolet specifications
The ID.3 is currently offered with four powertrain options in the UK. The ID.3 Pure Performance provides a 350 km (217 miles) range thanks to a 45 kWh battery that feeds a 150 hp motor. Go one level above, and you have the ID.3 Pro with a 145 hp motor and a larger 58 kWh battery that permits a 418 km (260 miles) range. Then you have the ID.3 Pro Performance with a 204 hp motor and the same battery and range as the Pro. Lastly, there’s the Pro S with a 204 hp e-motor and a 77 kWh battery extending the range to 544 km (338 miles). All the range figures are WLTP certified.
It’s the larger 77 kWh battery, and the 204 hp electric motor that we feel would be the right fit for the VW ID.3 convertible, which should be priced starting above GBP 35,000.
VW ID.3 Cabriolet production
The VW Group is currently evaluating possible manufacturing locations for its upcoming electric convertibles. VW doesn’t have to go out of its way to make convertible EVs, it already has the resources for it. The CEO said that the brand’s Osnabruck plant, where the T-Roc convertible is made is a worthy location for future convertibles, according to a report by Suddeutsche Zeitung from 1 December 2021. It will also help the plant utilise its capacity. This would be an option only if production at the mother plant in Zwicau, Germany, is not possible.
It’s logical for the brand to consider electric convertibles now that most other body styles have been brought under the EV umbrella. Dr Diess stated that both Audi and VW are considering convertible EVs.
Featured image: Twitter/Herbert Diess