Volkswagen has teased a genuinely affordable EV for years (the ID.3 was originally meant to be that model), but now it's finally ready to make that machine a reality. The company has unveiled an ID.2all concept that previews a production compact car priced below €25,000 (about $26,000). It should be considerably more affordable than the second-gen ID.3 (€39,995 in Germany), but it won't be as compromised as you might think.
The ID.2all is based on an upgraded "MEB Entry" platform that promises more performance than you'd expect from an EV this size. The front wheel drive car will pack a 223HP motor good for a 62MPH sprint in under seven seconds, and it should muster an estimated 280-mile range. It's expected to take just 20 minutes to charge from 10 percent to 80 percent, too. While there are clearly faster and longer-ranged EVs, VW's offering is more capable than alternatives like the Mini Cooper SE.
And like many EVs, the switch away from combustion power allows for considerably more interior space. VW claims as much room as a Golf despite pricing closer to the Polo supermini. The trunk isn't huge at 17 cubic feet, but the automaker claims it bests some larger cars. You might not compromise much on technology, either, as VW is promising Travel Assist, an EV route planner and smart lighting.
The production ID.2all should debut in Europe in 2025. Unfortunately, we wouldn't count on a North American release. Compact cars have been losing ground to crossovers and SUVs in the region for years, and VW's American branch only sells the sportier Golf GTI and Golf R in that category. Like it or not, you'll likely have to make do with an ID.4 if you want a reasonably-sized VW EV on this side of the Atlantic.
Even so, the ID.2all is an important car both for VW and the industry. It should play a key role in a stepped-up electrification strategy that will see VW launch ten new EVs by 2026, including the ID.7 sedan. This will also help the brand fend off competition from rival cars like the Renault Zoe (€35,100 in its native France). And importantly, this is part of a broader trend of making lower-priced EVs that don't feel like major compromises. Chevy's Equinox EV is poised to cost $30,000 when it arrives this fall, and Tesla is still clinging to dreams of a $25,000 model. Even if these cars are priced above combustion engine equivalents, they should help EVs transition into the mainstream.