The long-awaited Volkswagen ID.3 that is expected to be coming to Australia in the next year or two could have a price in the $A40,000 range, making it potentially the most affordable EV yet in the country.
“We’re a right-hand-drive market already right at the end of the production chain,” VW Australia’s brand communications director Paul Pottinger told CarsGuide. “And pricing, we’re looking at the top of the regular Golf range, think the R-Line, that $40k range.”
According to Volkswagen’s “configurator”, a base model VW Golf R-Line comes in at $37,450 MRRP, before on-road costs push the MRDP to $42,498.
If Volkswagen was able to bring the ID.3 to market in Australia at around that $40,000 mark, then they’d not only be making a lot of EV enthusiasts happy, but would also be selling one of the most affordable EV in Australia.
Currently, the MG ZS EV Essence SUV is Australia’s most affordable EV, with a total drive away price of $43,990. However, according to recent rumours, a pending facelift for the ZS EV could push the car’s price up and open the door for VW to land the ID.3 as Australia’s most affordable EV, depending on when it actually reaches the market.
Also awaiting arrival on Australian shores is the VW ID.4 SUV.
In May, Pottinger said VW was looking to sell the ID.4 “at around the same price” as the company’s Tiguan R-Line. According to VW’s configurator, the “Driveaway” price of the petrol engine Tiguan 162TSI R-Line sits at just over $60,000, while the diesel engine Tiguan 147TDI R-Line bumps up to $61,611.
“These will be circuit breakers,” Mr Pottinger said of the ID.3 hatch and ID.4 SUV, “genuinely affordable EVs.”
It’s worth noting, however, that “genuinely affordable EVs” rests heavily on the word “EVs” and less so on the “genuinely affordable”. Looking strictly at the ID.3, however, a trendy little hatchback, pricing the vehicle anywhere near the $40,000 mark is going to price out a significant portion of the population.
For comparison – a 2020 Suzuki Swift starts at $23,085, the Hyundai i30 at $25,490, and the Mazda 3 G20 Pure at $29,928. There remains, then, a cost factor for EVs that will serve in the immediate term to prevent mass adoption, but the time when EV costs fall to legitimately competitive levels with ICE models is just over the horizon.
As for when we’ll be seeing the ID.3 or ID.4?
“Originally we were talking about 2022, but it might now be 2023,” Pottinger said. “Why would Australia be a priority? We don’t even ask for incentives for EVs, just an even playing field, but Victoria’s hair-brained road user charge is the embodiment of a disincentive.”