VW’s EV crossover SUV – the I.D. Crozz, will debut in 2020 with a 311 mile range
Volkswagen’s EV crossover SUV – the I.D. Crozz – will arrive in 2020, It will ride on the company’s MEB modular platform – new architecture designed to efficiently accommodate EV battery systems. The Modular Electric Drive Matrix, or MEB is the “economic and technological backbone” behind VW’s ambitious plan to bring 150,000 electric cars to the market in 2020 and 27 all-new EV models across four brands (including Audi and Porsche) by 2022. VW has said it plans to build at least 10 million EVs based on the MEB platform.
By John Coulter, CMO, Current EV / July 2019
The I.D. “badge” stands for Intelligent Design. Vehicles wearing the badge will be members of a new line of e-mobility vehicles created with Next Gen aesthetics and visionary technology. The VW I.D. layout, with a short hood and long wheelbase, no driveshaft or exhaust tunnel, creates a low center of gravity, and a higher seating position. With batteries hidden below the car, the 4-seat Crozz will offer a flat floor and “lounge-like” interior. Klaus Bischoff, Head of Design for Volkswagen, explains the “Open Space” concept: “Before we first put pen to paper on the drawing board for the I.D. project, we debated the topic of ‘Mobility in the future’ at length. It is clear that the car of the future, and thus the mobile space, will be a place of communication more than ever before. The Open Space in the I.D. is just such a place.”
Thanks to a near 50:50 weight distribution, I.D. cars will offer superb handling abilities. 18 to 21-inch wheels will provide the new thick battery pack with the additional ground clearance it needs. Just like Teslas, I.D. cars will come with a choice of batteries, providing ranges between 175 to 300 miles on the EPA cycle.
The MEB platform will underpin all of VW’s I.D. cars, including the I.D. compact (called Neo), the I.D. sedan (called Vizzion), the modern I.D. interpretation of the VW Microbus (called Buzz), and the SUV Crossover I.D. (called Crozz).
VW says the Crozz SUV will have a top speed of about 112 mph and a range of about 311 miles. Drivers will be able to recharge the Crozz’s battery to 80 percent capacity in 30 minutes on a 150kWh charger. The car will use a pair of a 201-hp rear-axle-mounted motor for forward momentum and a 101-hp front-axle-mounted motor that can assist with additional power.
Volkswagen says it will eventually build the production version of the I.D. Crozz in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The company is expanding that facility – which currently builds the Passat sedan and Atlas SUV – to serve as its North American hub for electric-vehicle production. The first Crozz EVs in the USA in 2020 will come from a VW European factory, until 2022, when the Tennessee plant begins producing I.D. vehicles.
Volkswagen’s goal is to have eight manufacturing sites making electric vehicles on three different continents by 2022. As the first plant being ramped up to output I.D. e-mobility cars, the Chattanooga plant will expand its workforce from 3,500 to 4,500 employees.
Says Volkswagen: “The I.D. CROZZ is a sporty, zero-emission all-round vehicle that is designed to be interactive, and whose electric 4MOTION all-wheel drive system is as impressive on unpaved trails as it is in adverse weather conditions. One electric motor works at the front axle and one at the rear, and torque distribution is controlled via an ‘electric propshaft’. The driving range of the SUV that outputs 225 kW (system power) and boasts a top speed of 180 km/h is up to 500 kilometres (NEDC) on one battery charge. The high-performance battery can be charged to 80% of its energy capacity in 30 minutes using a fast-charging system.”
VW says its I.D. vehicle will feature autonomous driving technology. Volkswagen engineers designed the Crozz interior with self-driving in mind: “The steering wheel is an illuminated sensory surface with which the driver can switch from manual to fully automated (‘I.D. Pilot’) mode. This is done by touching the VW logo for three seconds. The steering wheel then retracts into a flush position within the dashpad. The traditional round shape is changed to a wheel with six rounded corners, creating a high-tech steering wheel. Integrated into the bottom section is an ‘island’ with illuminated capacitive fields that control things like: the ‘P’, ‘R’, ‘N’ and ‘D’ gears; turn signals; phone calls; playlists; and volume for the sound system.”
Volkswagen says its Crozz will use a “head-up display concept.” The automaker explains: “The driver receives all data relevant to driving, such as speed and visual navigation instructions, via the head-up display. Directions, for instance, are projected as virtual images 23 to 49 feet ahead of the car. The effect is astonishingly realistic: direction arrows are projected via augmented reality to show exactly where the driver is heading and become part of the driver’s three-dimensional surroundings. The cockpits of tomorrow will be packed with technology and still have more comfy room for you.”
Says drivingelectric.com: “The all-electric powertrain makes it much easier to automate the driving process, and the I.D. is packed with technology to read and understand the road ahead. Four laser scanners constantly monitor the surrounding environment, and this is backed up by ultrasonic and radar sensors and cameras, while data is also collected by the I.D. from other vehicles and road sensors. The I.D. is not only a milestone in its own right, but also represents the beginning of a whole range of vehicles that builds on the same technology to open up greater possibilities.”
Volkswagen is spending billions to embrace the Electric Future. Welcome to the VW I.D. space age, with many new I.D versions to come.