At this point we have seen plenty of ID.3 and ID.4’s on Irish roads. Sales have been particularly good for Volkswagen since they entered the EV market and although supply issues have plagued the world, VW somehow are still performing very well and getting bums on seats. So what’s next for the brand and where does this weeks test car sit in the range? Well that’s a good question and its one that caught us by surprise! This is the new ID.4 GTX, which we suppose is similar to GTI and GTE in the sense that it stands for its own product brand within the current range. Lets call it the more sporty or performance arm of the electrified vehicles from VW. In looking at the GTX you can most certainly tell it has been geared more towards performance with a slightly more aggressive look. An additional electric motor on the front axle brings not just all-wheel drive into the ID.4 family but also more power! The additional motor switches on intelligently within a few milliseconds when high performance or maximum traction is required. This is a very different beast to the regular ID.4 and one we enjoyed spending time with.
So what’s different and what catches your eye first with the new ID.4 GTX? Well on approach its hard not to be dazzled with the futuristic 20-inch alloy wheels in the exclusive GTX design. The black roof, railings and high-gloss air intake grille give it a more aggressive look. The elegant strip light between the headlights and the Volkswagen logo looks cool whilst the “GTX” lettering up front on the wings and on the boot leaves you under no illusions that this is something a bit different. Opening the driver’s door reveals a spacious cabin with some sporty details not found on the regular ID.4. Red decorative highlights accentuate various parts of the dash and GTX branding can be found on the seat covers, dash panel and in the front doors. Other areas to adorn the GTX logo include the front sill panel trim and the steering wheel.
Like the regular ID.4 your GTX can also communicate directly with you to get you through traffic more calmly. When armed, the car greets you and translates the notices of your infotainment and assistance systems into light signals that aid you through traffic. As soon as you use the voice control, you receive a response to your voice via ID. Light. It sounds rather complex but its quiet intuitive to use and when you leave the vehicle, the ID. Light will see you off with a farewell in the form of light signals. Our test car also had the optional augmented-reality head-up-display which projects important information directly into your field of view on the windscreen. It’s basically relaying the upcoming turning direction etc from the navigation directly into your eye-line. It’s a futuristic and pleasant place to spend time and getting back into a normal combustion powered vehicle afterwards feels somewhat archaic!
Getting down to the business end now and like the regular ID.4, you wont be left looking for more power. With 299hp and 474Nm of torque the ID.4 GTX makes all electric driving even more fun with an acceleration of 0 to 60 km/h in just 3.2 seconds and of 0 to 100 km/h in only 6.2 seconds. No shifting, zero delay, just sink the go pedal and feel a bolt of excitement. With its 77kWh battery and a range of up to 464 km, you can also easily get through the day or get away to the country without suffering from the dreaded range anxiety. Top speeds of 180 km/h are achievable also but it’s having the dual motor all wheel drive system that will appeal to most. Should we be unlucky enough to have a harsh winter here in Ireland, the GTX will deal with snow or ice with ease.
Like the regular ID.4 as standard the GTX has an automatic emergency braking (AEB) system that is capable of averting collisions in a range of situations, including when the ID.4 is approaching other cars or turning across the path of an oncoming vehicle. It also helps drivers to avoid pedestrians and cyclists, both to the front and side of the vehicle. The ID.4 received the maximum five-star rating in Euro NCAP crash testing, scoring over 93% for adult occupants and 89% for children. You and your passengers are in safe hands!
Ahh yes the good old elephant in the room. There are two ID.4 GTX models available here in Ireland. You can opt for the Business or Max variant, which we had on test. The Business version naturally has a little less spec and costs €64,530 whilst the Max will set you back €74,950. This is not cheap by any means considering the regular ID.4 can be bought from roughly €53k. It also puts it over the €60k SEAI grant cut off point which could make it hard to justify for some. Naturally there are various PCP and finance offers available through your local VW agent but do your due diligence, and make sure you spec the car that best fits your needs.
Driving or living with the ID.4 GTX for a week was fun and it does drive different to the regular ID.4. Volkswagen have reworked the springs, shock absorbers and electronic stabilisers to improve driving dynamics. Is it harsher on the road? Not really to be honest and rolling on twenty inch wheels with the added motor weight, we sort of expected the ride to be a little more teeth chattering but the boffins at VW have done well. They have also optimised steering behaviour to give you a sportier feel on curvy stretches but we didn’t notice it was much different over the regular ID.4. Naturally the power surge from the get go is addictive and like other members of the ID family, it manages battery consumption well even with some spirited driving. Our biggest gripe really is does it warrant the extra price tag over the regular ID.4? Probably not! The GTX badge puts a little too much onto the bottom line for us to warrant. Yes it looks marginally better inside and out but some people couldn’t even tell the difference when we spent a week with it. We understand the cult following the GTI badge has enjoyed for many years on the combustion powered cars but will GTX create the same in the electric powered world? Only time will tell.