What Happened to the Launch of Volkswagen’s ID.3 Electric Car?

A troubling series of delays for the automaker

Volkswagen ID.3 electric car
Can Volkswagen stick the landing on its delayed ID.3 EV?
Alexander Migl/Creative Commons

In 2019, Volkswagen announced a 2020 release date for the ID.3, which was touted as an affordable yet high-performance electric car. At the time, Sean O’Kane at The Verge described why the ID.3 was so important to both the automotive industry at large and to Volkswagen specifically:

The ID.3, which resembles the German automaker’s popular Golf hatchback, has the potential to be a very important car for VW. It will be the first vehicle built on the company’s new modular all-electric platform, one that will power dozens more cars and SUVs that are waiting in the wings as part of the larger Volkswagen Group’s multibillion-dollar push into EVs.

Since then, however, the ID.3 has encountered a few obstacles in the road. At the end of 2019, reports circulated that the ID.3 had encountered issues with its software. Now, at Jalopnik, Erik Shilling has a broader overview of the ID.3’s troubles, casting a worrying look at a high-profile vehicle.

The delays, Shilling notes, are a reason why Herbert Diess is no longer CEO of the VW brand. The ID.3 has encountered a series of delays reaching customers, some of which are understandable, given the pandemic, but perhaps not to the extent that the automaker has experienced to date.

Shilling also writes that releasing something with flaws and then patching them after launch isn’t really an option here:

Reminder: the ID.3 is supposed to be basically the next Beetle, a compact to be here for years, maybe decades to come. It’s definitely more important to VW to stick the landing than it is to rush out shoddy product …

What does this mean for the future of Volkswagen, and for electric vehicles in general? It’s a worrying set of circumstances, and one which the automaker can hopefully rectify quickly.

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