Volkswagen announces production start date for its most affordable $20K ID.1 EV

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For the first time, Volkswagen announced it aims to start producing its most affordable ID.1 electric car, starting at 20,000 euros ($21,700), in 2027. The $20K Volkswagen ID.1 will offer “affordable electric mobility for everyone,” VW brand leader Thomas Shafer said Thursday.

Volkswagen to begin building $20K ID.1 EV in 2027

“The working title is ID.1 and the vehicle is planned for 2027,” Shafer confirmed during VW’s annual press conference Thursday.

Work on the ID.1 is already well underway. Shafer said, “We’re already in the middle of it, we know what the car should look like.” However, the biggest challenge will be deciding where to build it.

“This is extremely economically challenging,” Shafer explained. Due to battery costs, Volkswagen can only launch a $20K (20,000 euro) EV by mass producing it.

According to Automobilwoche, four strategies are under consideration. Shafer said Volkswagen will “make the decision shortly” as to where the $20K ID.1 will be built. VW is also in talks with Renault about building a small mass-market electric car.

Shafer confirmed the company is sticking to its EV game plan, including 11 new VW brand models launching by 2027. The ID.1 will be one of them.

Volkswagen ID 2all electric vehicle (Source: Volkswagen)

It will follow the ID.2, revealed last March in concept form. The ID.2all concept is “spacious like a Golf and affordable like a Polo,” according to VW.

Shafer claims the EV concept shows “where we want to take the brand.” Based on a new entry-level version of its MEB platform, the concept features 279 miles range, starting under $27,000 (25,000 euros). It will launch in 2026.

Volkswagen ID 2 all SUV (Source: Volkswagen)

In December, Stepan Rehak, VW’s spokesperson for Design, posted the first teaser of the ID. 2all SUV, the affordable EVs’ big brother.

In the US, Volkswagen confirmed it would launch a new larger electric SUV. The brand expects to continue growing in North America with the ID.7 and ID Buzz rolling out this year. VW also launched an updated ID.4 (see our review) with more range.

From left to right Volkswagen ID.4, ID Buzz, ID.7 (Source: Volkswagen US Media Site)

Electrek’s Take

Volkswagen is one of many automakers looking to introduce more affordable EVs. The comments follow US EV startup Rivian’s official debut of the R2, which will start at $45,000. That’s almost half the current R1S and R1T starting prices. Rivian’s CEO RJ Scaringe also showcased the R3, a smaller and even more affordable EV.

Ford, Tesla, Hyundai, Kia, GM, and others are all planning to launch more affordable electric models as automakers look to expand the EV market to new segments.

Although media headlines are misleading with claims like “EV euphoria is dead,” electric vehicle adoption is still climbing and is expected to accelerate over the next few years. The key for many brands will be introducing more affordable, everyday EVs to attract buyers who are on the fence about going electric.

Who will win the race to launch more affordable EVs? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

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