Battery-electric vehicles that offer power and range get pricy. Many cost over $60,000 with several sporting six-figure price tags. Thankfully, several mainstream automakers have gone and made efforts to offer vehicles with a nice blend of both. The 2022 Volkswagen ID4 AWD is among those and it proves that you don’t need to sacrifice long-distance driving capability for extra power and traction. In reality, the dual-motor model may just be the one to get because it compromises the least.
2022 Volkswagen ID4 AWD: Differences with the Single-Motor Model
You need a sharp eye to distinguish the ID4 AWD from its single motor counterpart. In addition to featuring both Pro and Pro S grades, the latter also offers the Gradient package that adds the tri-tone exterior and 20-inch wheels. The one cue distinguishing dual-motor models? An AWD badge on the front fenders.
Major changes lie under the skin. The second electric drive motor on the front axle increases the combined output to 295 hp and 339 lb-ft of torque. For 2022, Volkswagen also increased the peak DC charge rate to 135 kW, a bump of 10 kW. Curb weight, on the other hand, increases to 4,824 pounds for the Pro trim and 4,927 pounds for the Pro S. That’s an increase of 255 pounds over the single-motor model depending on the version you get.
Simple Yet Complex
The clean and straightforward look of the ID4’s cabin may make you think it’s approachable but in reality, that’s far from the truth. Volkswagen’s new user interface requires a lot of time to learn and its responses can get erratic. You get vivid graphics from the 12.0-inch touchscreen; however, it contains excessive amounts of submenus, making it a hassle to use. Add haptic feedback controls to the mix and the interface becomes distracting on the go, requiring you to take your eyes off the road. The standard seven-speaker audio system offers good clarity but doesn’t do a good job covering the cabin.
Volkswagen wins back brownie points for its fantastic driver assistance features. Each component works subtly and doesn’t get overly intrusive when it corrects your trajectory. Travel Assist, the brand’s semi-autonomous system, works seamlessly and accurately follows traffic flow even at low speeds. It does a great job keeping track of other vehicles. The system operates proactively meaning it reacts quickly to someone cutting you off or the vehicle ahead slowing down. With lane centering and steering assist active, Travel Assist also helps you navigate gentle turns on the highway.
Unlike some of its competitors, the ID4 features a conventional layout. That means you don’t get a frunk since many components live under the hood. This results in an expansive cabin with comfortable seating for five. It also gets nifty storage areas like the trick center console with removable dividers. Regardless of whether you have the rear seats up or down, the ID4 sports generous cargo space thanks to the squared-off cabin.
The ID4 moves away from the typical class-above fit and finish that Volkswagens of the past had. Instead, you get a more mainstream interior. Yes, you get a lot of padding and soft-touch plastics but none of the materials exude an upscale aura. Additionally, you find chintzy bits on the door cards and harder pieces near areas you interact with frequently. Fortunately, the ID4 redeems itself with excellent sound insulation. Even on the highway and on 20-inch wheels, noise levels remain low, preserving the cabin’s serenity. Multi-colored interior ambient lighting gives you a touch of color and complements the available two-tone upholstery.
2022 Volkswagen ID4 AWD: Yes, It’s Fun to Drive
Dual-motor ID4s stand out for their road manners. The additional electric drive motor gives you brisk acceleration for effortless passing, hill climbing, and merging. You’re never short on power, giving the SUV an effortless feel on the road. Complementing the extra speed is additional grip. Since both axles now get power, the ID4 AWD possesses a lot of traction, enabling it to stick to the road better. The rear electric drive motor makes more power than the front one, giving the SUV an RWD-biased character. This results in a neutral feel since it rotates more willingly, minimizing understeer and sharpening its driving dynamics.
When pushed, the ID4 behaves more like a slightly lifted wagon a la Volkswagen Golf AllTrack. It remains planted through corners and drives smaller than its size might suggest. Light, accurate steering makes this SUV easy to maneuver, especially with its tight turning circle. You don’t lose out on ride comfort either because the ID4 remains cushy through poorly maintained roads. Between the suspension and tires with generous sidewalls, the cabin is nicely isolated from harsh impacts.
Like many EVs from German automakers, the 2022 Volkswagen ID4 lacks a dedicated one-pedal driving mode. B mode on the gear selector slows you down sooner and gives back more energy but won’t bring you to a complete stop. This makes the ID4 an ideal transition vehicle for consumers. You get a familiar operating experience in an all-electric package. Seamless transitions from regenerative to mechanical braking add to the SUV’s conventional feel. Regardless of which mode you’re in, the ID4 generates a lot of electricity to feed into the 82-kWh battery (77-kWh usable capacity), allowing you to drive the car more efficiently.
A True Road Warrior
EPA-rated at 251 miles for the Pro trim and 245 miles for the Pro S, the 2022 Volkswagen ID4 AWD has legitimate road trip capabilities. If that’s not enough, the single-motor variant is good for 275 miles in the Pro grade or 262 miles in the Pro S. In the real world, the ID4 AWD easily beats its ratings. During my week, I averaged 280 miles without utilizing any hypermiling techniques.
The ID4 AWD’s 135-kW DC charging rate may not impress on paper but this thing has one ace up its sleeve: consistency. Since it keeps its battery at the optimum temperature all the time, the SUV manages to sustain its advertised peak for a long time. In one 10 to 80 percent charging session, it immediately shot up to 130 kW and stayed there for a good amount. The electricity intake started tapering off at 40 percent but did so gradually instead of big drops. By 70 percent, it took in roughly 65 kW but stayed in that ballpark until 80 percent when it fell below 50 kW. It took roughly 30 minutes to complete that charging session.
When you take this into account along with the ID4’s generous range, it reveals itself as a genuine road trip vehicle. It goes far on a single charger and doesn’t spend much time plugged in when you need to juice up.
A Worthy EV?
The ID4 remains one of the more affordable EVs even with the $3,680 upcharge on the AWD model. Starting at $46,205, this SUV brings a strong value proposition to the table, especially with the enhanced traction and performance. Even at $50,705 for the Pro S grade, it’s still on the lower end of the spectrum when compared to its rivals. Fully loaded with the Gradient package and the extra-cost Kings Red Metallic exterior color, the ID4 AWD tops out at $52,600.
Some may look at the 2022 Volkswagen ID4 AWD as a mere appliance. After a closer look at the car, this version possesses legitimate capabilities thanks to that second electric drive motor. While it’s not a true high-performance model, this ID4 remains engaging. It’s proof that fun sometimes comes in a package that you least expect and that’s the case here. You get a nice balance of daily usability and driving enjoyment. For these reasons, the ID4 is a solid buy for those wanting a great all-around EV.