The automotive industry is rapidly evolving, with a major focus on electric vehicles. Volkswagen, a German automaker, has been leading the charge when it comes to electric cars. In January, at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Volkswagen unveiled a camouflaged prototype of what would eventually become the ID.7, an electric sedan designed to compete with the Tesla Model 3, serving as an upscale electric alternative to the Passat, particularly in the North American market.
The ID.7 is set to debut at the Shanghai Auto Show on April 18, and the production design has been revealed through China's Interior Ministry patent office. This provides a sneak peek at what to expect from the North American and European versions that will be launched later. The pictures reveal that the production ID.7 incorporates design cues from the ID.Aero, ID.Vizzion, and ID.Space Vizzion concepts.
One interesting thing to note is that the model designation on the Chinese-market car reads “ID.7 Vizzion” instead of just “ID.7”. It remains unclear whether this naming scheme will apply to other markets.
The ID.7's silhouette looks oddly tall, but it is presumed that this was done to improve aerodynamic efficiency. The upper part of the front end is about what was expected, but the lower part is a bit of a surprise. Instead of the sportier fascia of the ID.Aero concept, the production ID.7 sports T-shaped graphics that are almost reminiscent of the Polestar 2. The faint outline of a Lamando-style “smiling” grille is visible between the lower intake and the headlight area.
Although the rear end design with its patterned full-width light bar, all-black greenhouse with a contrasting chrome strip, and flush door handles are similar to the concept, the overall design still looks a bit off. Multiple wheel designs and paint colors are being shown, which suggests that the bodywork won't change drastically from trim to trim. It is possible that an eventual GTX version may look more like the concept, but for now, this is all that we have.
Fortunately, the interior styling of the car is much closer to the concept and is almost unchanged for the production model. An unbroken chrome strip running the width of the cabin highlights the flat dashboard, whose intelligent air vents are integrated into the negative space between the top and bottom halves.
This space also houses the gauge cluster, which is small and unobtrusive to provide only the most vital information to the driver. Those seeking more information can turn to the large infotainment screen, which appears to feature a mix of capacitive buttons and full-touch controls. The car also retains the concept's steering wheel design and roll-top center console, as well as the play/pause pedals found on many other production ID. models.
The ID.7's specs are promising. With up to 435 miles (700 km) of range and an optional dual-motor powertrain confirmed by Volkswagen, the German automaker is setting its sights on competing with the Tesla Model 3 and Hyundai Ioniq 6. If the price is right, the ID.7 could give these established models a run for their money.
The Chinese-market model will be powered by a 77 kWh battery pack, which will provide a maximum output of 201 hp (204 PS / 150 kW). Top speed is reportedly limited to just 96 mph (155 km/h), and although none of these three figures have been officially confirmed by Volkswagen, they seem to be in line with other existing ID. models and are likely to be correct, at least for the base version.