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Volkswagen e-UP
Credit: Volkswagen

Cars

Rumor: Volkswagen Working On Smaller ID.1 EV

There a rumors Volkswagen is hard at work on an electric replacement for the e-UP! that will be based on a shortened version of the MEB chassis. Look for it in 2023.

I must be prescient. A few days ago, I wrote in a story that Tesla should consider building a Model 1 for the mass market, urban transportation crowd. Today, a report by CAR Magazine claims its sources say Volkswagen is doing exactly that. According to the rumor mill, the German manufacturer is hard at work on an all electric small car to replace the e-UP!

Volkswagen e-UP

Volkswagen e-UP! Image credit: Volkswagen

Expect it to look a lot like the current car with some design influences from the ID.3 In other words, it will be a 5-door hatchback targeted at the same loyal customer base that buys the e-UP! today. Built on a shortened version of the company’s MEB electric car platform, it is expected to be in showrooms in 2023. We can’t use the graphic in the CAR story but you can click the link and see it for yourself. It looks a lot like a smaller version of the ID.3.

Ralf Brandstätter, head of the VW brand, tells CAR Magazine, ‘In the future, it will make no sense putting battery cells in a car designed for an engine as we have done with the e-Up! That was a stepping stone project. We are working on a BEV below £17,600. We can shrink the MEB architecture with less content to get the cost down.”

He says cars built on the MEB chassis are up to 40% less expensive to manufacture than cars powered by an infernal combustion engine. The e-UP! costs £19,695 in the UK today. Presumably the ID.1 would also replace the Skoda Citigo e and Seat Mii small hatchbacks that are clones of the e-UP!

According to CAR’s sources, the ID.1 will come with either a 24 kWh or 36 kWh battery pack and have a range of 185 miles with the larger battery. That would put it right in line with other urban electric cars like the MINI SE and Honda e. There are also suggestions flying around about an ID.2 to compete with the likes of the Renault Zoe and Peugeot 208-e. But the speculation doesn’t end there. There are reports that sketches of a small SUV and a small minivan based on the ID.1 floating around Volkswagen’s design center.

Such smaller cars are very popular in Europe, even if most Americans turn up their noses at ultra compact models. European roads are awash in such cars and auto makers will need electric versions available for sale if they hope to convince customers to forego their gasoline powered small cars for electric alternatives.

 
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Steve writes about the interface between technology and sustainability from his home in Florida or anywhere else the Singularity may lead him. You can follow him on Twitter but not on any social media platforms run by evil overlords like Facebook.

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