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Read Caroline’s Volkswagen ID.3 review for everything you need to know about buying Volkswagen’s popular electric hatchback in Ireland.

The Volkswagen ID.3 has been a big success in Ireland since it first went on sale back in 2020. Along with the bestselling ID.4, it’s really helped put Volkswagen on the map as one of the leading producers of electric vehicles.

The compact, five-door hatchback is available in 2024 with the choice of two battery sizes and it’s also had a price cut making it a more attractive prospect than ever before.

Let’s take a closer look.

The Volkswagen ID.3 on test for Changing Lanes
The Volkswagen ID.3 on test for Changing Lanes

Styling

In 2023, the ID.3 received a facelift that lightly tweaks the styling and adds some new colours like Dark Olivine Green – all for a more sophisticated presence. There’s a new bonnet and the black strip under the windscreen has been removed. Volkswagen has also added a new front bumper with larger air intakes that have an aerodynamic benefit too. There are also new rear light clusters. Alloy wheel sizes vary from 18- to 20-inch depending on trim level. It’s a handsome but not drastically different ID.3.

Interior

The cabin of the ID.3 is very minimalist compared to traditional fuel-powered Volkswagens like the Polo and the Golf. It’s very modern but a little austere at the same time. For the facelifted model, Volkswagen has included some more soft touch materials in the dashboard and doors, but a Renault Megane E-Tech still has a nicer cabin overall.

There is a small digital instrument cluster as before for the driver behind the steering wheel. There’s also a 10-inch touchscreen that’s running the latest Volkswagen software for improved system performance and can receive over-the-air updates. It’s responsive to use now, though the smartphone generation will likely find the wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto interface far more interesting.

The cabin of the 2024 Volkswagen ID.3
The cabin of the 2024 Volkswagen ID.3

The navigation system includes a route planner to help plan charging stops. The ventilation controls are placed in the screen as before, which can be a little awkward to adjust while driving. There are a few shortcut buttons underneath and touch sliders to adjust the volume of the stereo and the level of heating of the interior.

Practicality

The ID.3 was the first Volkswagen to be built on the brand’s modular electric drive (MEB) platform. This allowed for an efficient design and spacious interior for a compact hatchback. The ID.3 feels roomy in the back seat with large footwells. The boot can accommodate 385 litres, which is competitive for a compact electric hatchback. The rear seats split fold 60:40 and there’s Isofix child seat fixtures on the two outer seats and the front passenger seat.

Battery

The ID.3 is available with two different battery sizes: 58 kWh or 77 kWh. The 58 kWh offers up to 428 km (WLTP) of electric driving, while the 77 kWh offers up to 557 km (WLTP).

During my test drive of the ID.3 77kWh in a cold January, my average consumption was 18-19 kWh per 100 kilometres, which indicates a range of 405-428 kilometres in real world driving.

The ID.3 is a smart, practical electric hatchback
The ID.3 is a smart, practical electric hatchback

Driving

The ID.3 is rear-wheel drive – just like the original Beetle – with a single electric motor producing an ample 204hp and 310Nm of torque. That’s good for a 0-100km/h time of 7.4-7.9 seconds, depending on which model you go for. The ID.3 77kWh feels sprightly from behind the wheel, with plenty of nippy acceleration on offer. It’s smooth and agile to drive, with a solid feel and cohesiveness to the controls – all the things that made the Golf famous! It’s devoid of much character but it can’t be accused of being anything other than capable, which will please most buyers. Comfort and refinement levels are generally good though it can feel a little bumpy over imperfections in the road surface.

Charging 

11 kW charging comes as standard. DC fast charging is possible up to 120kW for an 80% charge in 30-35 minutes.

Pricing

The ID.3 58kWh is available on the road from €37,112 in Pro trim or from €37,928 in Pro Plus. The ID.3 77kWh is available from €42,440 for the Pro S and from €44,865 for the Pro S Plus.

Boot space in the Volkswagen ID.3
Boot space in the Volkswagen ID.3

Verdict

The Volkswagen ID.3 is a hugely significant car for Volkswagen and has been a big seller for the brand. However it’s come under ever more scrutiny in a new car market that’s become increasingly competitive with the arrival of some other brilliant electric hatchbacks like the Cupra Born, MG 4 and the Renault Megane E-Tech.

The facelift certainly goes some way to make the ID.3 more appealing but in truth, updates are minor and it’s the price cut that really makes it worth a look. Buyers will find a competent electric hatchback that ticks the practicality box while offering a solid and predictable drive, with competitive range – particularly if you can stretch to the 77kWh.

The ID.3 is still lacking some character but it does have a classic Volkswagen quality feel so naturally it will continue to be a sound buy from one of Ireland’s bestselling car brands.

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Written by Caroline Kidd

Founder and Editor of Changing Lanes, Juror for Irish Car of the Year

The new Volkswagen ID.3 - sensible beyond measure!
The new Volkswagen ID.3 – sensible beyond measure!