So you want an electric car, but need third row seating? The choices today are few and far between. Tesla now offers a third row option for its Model Y, but thanks to its aerodynamic styling, the starting center for your basketball team may not want to sit back there very long. Last week, photos of the upcoming Volkswagen ID.6 — a production-ready version of the company’s Roomzz concept — appeared unexpectedly on the website of China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, which suggests it has been approved for production in China.
Automotive News China quickly picked up on the MIIT posting and reports that it will be built at a new factory in Shanghai that is jointly owned by SAIC and Volkswagen. That factory is said to have an annual capacity of 300,000. The ID.6 is based on Volkswagen’s modular MEB platform that forms the foundation of the company’s ID.3 hatchback and ID.4 SUV. According to the MIIT website, the ID.6 is 11.5 inches longer than the ID4 and 24.2 inches longer than the ID3.
For Chinese customers, the base ID.6 X will come with an 82 kWh lithium-ion battery and a single 75 kW electric motor driving the rear wheels. A dual motor version with another 75 kW motor driving the front wheels will be optional. There is no information at the present time whether a larger battery will be an option.
VW is already producing the ID.4 Crozz in China at the FAW and Volkswagen factory in Foshan and the ID.4 X, at the SAIC and Volkswagen factory in Shanghai. Volkswagen said in November that production of three additional ID family models will start in China in 2021. Altogether, VW plans to introduce eight ID models in China by 2023. The company is also building a new electric vehicle assembly plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, where it will start manufacturing the ID.4 next year.
Presumably, the ID.6 will also be assembled there, as American customers prefer larger vehicles with greater seating capacity. Juergen Stackmann, sales and marketing director for the VW brand, told AutoExpress in 2019 that the production ID Roomz would be sold in the US, but was unlikely to be marketed in Europe where buyers prefer a compact car shape and a car that is not “extra large.”
The 7-passenger electric car is something that should appeal to American drivers who have made Volkswagen’s gargantuan Atlas its bestselling model in the US. If the EV revolution is to be successful, companies will have to give customers what the want and 7 passenger seating is what a lot of families expect these days. Prices for the ID.6 in China have not yet been announced.
Image credits: MIIT