The ID.4 is based on the Volkswagen I.D. Crozz and I.D. Crozz II concept cars, which debuted in 2017 at the Shanghai and Frankfurt Auto Show, respectively. A prototype of the ID.4 appeared in camouflage at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show, discreetly so as not to steal the show from the first electric mass market vehicle of the German brand, the ID.3.
The production version was unveiled globally on September 23, 2020. Unlike the ID.3 which is oriented mainly for the European market, the ID.4 also targeted the North American region as one of its core markets. Volkswagen Group of America CEO Scott Keogh went as far as saying the ID.4 “drives like a GTI, it has the packaging of a Tiguan and the purpose of the Beetle,” to emphasize its driving dynamics, design, and technology.
At launch, the electric SUV is solely a rear-wheel-drive with an electric motor located at the rear. For the North American market, the motor develops 201 hp (204 PS; 150 kW) and 228 lb⋅ft (309 N⋅m) of torque capable of towing up to 2,700 lb (1,225 kg). Powered by an 82 kWh battery pack (gross capacity) positioned in the underbody, the configuration offers an estimated driving range of 250 mi (402 km) on a full charge on the EPA cycle. A more powerful, electric all-wheel-drive variant with an additional motor and 302 hp (306 PS; 225 kW) will follow later in 2021. In the U.S., the ID.4 will also come with three years of fast charging with Electrify America for no additional cost.
For the European market, the ID.4 is available with three electric motor options. The versions with 146 hp (148 PS; 109 kW) or 168 hp (170 PS; 125 kW) are powered by a 52 kWh battery pack, while versions with the larger 77 kWh battery produces 201 hp (204 PS; 150 kW) capable of unlocking a range of 323 mi (520 km) on a single charge. The range-topping model is capable of a 0–100 km/h (0–62 mph) sprint in 8.5 seconds. Later in 2021 an AWD variant of the ID.4 will be offered that will be capable of 0-96 km/h (0-60 mph) in 5.8 seconds.