The Volkswagen ID.5 is a coupefied electric SUV with up to 300bhp | Top Gear
BBC TopGear
BBC TopGear
The Latest US News & Reviews
USA News
Tuesday 5th December

The Volkswagen ID.5 is a coupefied electric SUV with up to 300bhp

The ID.5 crossover launches with three electric powertrains and Partridge-esque seats

Published: 03 Nov 2021

Welcome to the inevitable. For all Volkswagen’s claims the ID.5 sees its electric cars enter a bold new segment, we knew a mildly coupefied ID.4 was coming. One which immediately launches in top-rung GTX trim (as pictured in red).

The basics are thus. The ID.5 occupies exactly the same footprint as the Volkswagen ID.4, but its sloping roofline lends it a new look and 12mm less headroom, though a mildly cleaner route through the air – a drag coefficient of 0.26 compared to the ID.4’s 0.28. It’s not a night and day shift, and so range figures don’t dramatically change.

Advertisement - Page continues below

They’re as high as 323 miles if you go for one of the base ID.5s, which are rear-wheel driven and offer 171bhp (and a 10.4secs 0-62mph time) or 201bhp (8.4secs) with a limited 99mph top speed either way.

Too sold on EVs having a wallop of acceleration? Then you’ll want the hot hatch-quick, all-wheel-drive ID.5 GTX, with its 295bhp peak, 6.3secs sprint and 112mph top speed, though a slimmer 298-mile claimed range.

It essentially uses the same powertrain as the top-rung Q4 e-tron. Or, indeed, the Volkswagen ID.4 GTX. As well as its extra performance it boasts five driving modes plus a ‘Sport’ setting for the stability control you'll almost certainly never use.

It also gets a slightly more assertive body (well, a “charismatic body unique from every angle”, according to bumf), wheels up to 21 inches in size and perforated GTX logos on its seats. Volkswagen thinks they look cool. We think they resemble Alan Partridge’s funeral faux-pas jacket.

Advertisement - Page continues below

Other goodies? A whole heap of technology. There’s a new software system able to receive over-the-air updates. The sat nav instructions can comprise augmented reality holograms beamed onto the road ahead. Presumably just for you, mind, or else there’ll be some discombobulated Deliveroo riders.

The park assist system has a memory function to make its manoeuvres even quicker, bi-directional charging lets you store energy for your home in the ID.5 (handy in a power cut) while ‘Car to X’ communication “uses mass location data from compatible vehicles in the Volkswagen fleet and signals from infrastructure within a radius of up to 800 metres” to warn you of traffic or incidents up ahead.

The same battery is used at all three rungs of ID.5 ownership – a 77kW item placed low and central in the car for optimal handling. It accepts charging up to 135kW and can accrue up to 242 miles of range in 30 minutes at a suitable plug (or around 200 miles for the GTX).

It certainly won’t be the last VW EV we’ll see, of course. The ID.5 is just its third major model in a grand plan that’ll see “one electric model in all key segments by 2025” with “the last engine-powered vehicle to roll off the production line between 2033 and 2035”. VW says the company will have a carbon-neutral balance sheet by 2050 at the latest.

Top Gear

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

More from Top Gear

See more on Volkswagen

Subscribe to the Top Gear Newsletter

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

By clicking subscribe, you agree to receive news, promotions and offers by email from Top Gear and BBC Studios. Your information will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

BBC TopGear

Try BBC Top Gear Magazine

Get your first 5 issues for £5