There’s something old and something new about the ID. GTI Concept that Volkswagen has brought to the spotlights of the IAA in Münich. The name combines the letters from the brand’s all-electric range with those from its hereditary sports badge. But weren’t all-electric go-faster models from Wolfsburg called GTX?
Indeed, but it seems Volkswagen wants to convey a different message here. The ID. GTI builds upon the ID2.all, the small electric hatchback that must make electric mobility affordable. And because the GTI badge made sportiness available to the masses in the seventies, the concept looks back at those heydays. There’s the color scheme, for example, blending the diamond silver with the typical red contrasting – at least on the show car in Münich.
More Polo than Golf
On the inside, you’ll find the typical golf ball, though it doesn’t serve to change gears in this case, but is used as a design pattern for the rotary controller, called GTI Experience Control, to access the nerve center of the car. At least, that’s what we are supposed to believe from the provided virtual pictures, as the concept is displayed without an interior.
With a length of 4.2 meters, the ID. GTI Concept is more of a sibling to the current Polo than the Golf, but it runs on 20-inch wheels. The logo on the back isn’t mistaken, and we also see dark cladding on the wheel arches, just like on the first generations of the GTI. Dimensions are slightly larger in comparison to the regular ID.2 all.
It appears that Volkswagen wants to make a distinction between GTX models, as this badge is even glued to a minivan like the ID. Buzz and these more hardcore variants will emphasize handling and dynamics more than sheer power. Volkswagen refers to a track-oriented set-up and declares that series production has been validated, though we only have the faintest idea about powertrain options and battery packs.
The ID GTI also shifts the attention away from the dark clouds above Wolfsburg. Last week, the UBS bank gave Volkswagen shares a sell rating, as its analysts had calculated that the group has to deal with a 25% cost handicap compared to its rising rival BYD. Consequently, VW shares took a hit at the stock exchange.
VW brand boss Thomas Schäfer is keeping up hopes. Asked about the decline in EV sales recently, partly triggered by reduced incentives in Germany, he called it an “interim low” and expects the market to recover in the forthcoming months and years. “We assume that the share of e-cars in Europe will increase significantly,” he added, “Since May, we have seen an upward trend in incoming orders again.” The boss said he didn’t aim to artificially gather market share by partaking in price wars, calling this practice “unsustainable.”