In a recently leaked internal drawing from Volkswagen AG, the German automaker is seen comparing its upcoming ID.4 compact electric SUV to the Tesla Model Y.
Translating a word on the drawing revealed that this is a hand-drawn sketch of both cars probably by a Volkswagen car designer. The sketch mostly outlines the comparison of the exterior dimensions between both EVs.
For the ease of understanding the comparison, I took the numbers mentioned on the above sketch sheet and put it in the following table. I also converted millimeters to inches for readers acquainted with the imperial unit system.
Table: Tesla Model Y vs. VW ID.4 Dimensions and Specs Comparison
|VW ID.4||Tesla Model Y||Difference|
|Length||4,584 mm (180.4 in)||4,751 mm (187 in)||-167 mm (-6.6 in)|
|Wheelbase||2,766 mm (109 in)||2,875 mm (113 in)||-109 mm (-4 in)|
|Turning Circle||10.2 m||12.1 m||+1.9 m|
|Battery Pack||78 kWh||78.3 kWh||Similar|
|Range (WLTP)||522 km||~505 km||Almost similar|
|Peak Charging Rate||125 kW||250 kW||-125 kW (50% slower)|
|Acceleration (0-100 km/h)||8.5s||5.1s||-3.4s|
|Price (Euros)||44,500 (RWD)|
| ~54,000 (RWD)*|
The most interesting bit from this comparison is the price point at which Volkswagen is able to offer a comparable range electric SUV against the Tesla Model Y. A difference of around €10k is a huge plus point for the VW ID.4 at the moment.
The price of the Model Y will certainly go down once Giga Berlin is up and running with Model Y production next year. The plant will save the time and cost of shipping all the way from the United States and result in a possibly significant price decrease.
Charging & Charging Infrastructure
But VW ID.4’s peak charging rate or at the speed that it can be charged is lacking at least 1 generation behind the Tesla Model Y’s.
Tesla’s older V2 Superchargers are able to charge Teslas at 120 to 145 kW. With the latest V3 stations, Teslas are able to charge at 250 kW peak rate which translates to around 1000 miles or 1600 kilometers of range added to the battery pack in 1 hour of charging.
Tesla Model Y has another advantage as the automaker’s dedicated Supercharger Network is already abundant in Europe, North American, and the main Chinese cities.
Volkswagen, besides partnering with 3rd-party EV charging providers will have to build its own infrastructure as well to compete with Tesla — because electric car drivers need peace of mind when they need electrons for the battery.
The good news in all of this is VW is taking electric mobility seriously now and recently, Volkswagen Chairman Herbert Diess invited Elon Musk for a test drive on the company’s ID.3 hatchback EV. Elon Musk said, “I think for a non-sporty car it’s pretty good”.
Looks like Tesla and Elon Musk are well prepared for this type of competition in the compact SUV / Crossover segment, therefore the Gigafactory Berlin is taking shape so fast. If Tesla is also able to source Model Y parts from local suppliers at competitive prices like China, the Model Y price might be further reduced to give thought time to the VW ID.4.
Volkswagen’s electric mobility division is moving fast as last week they handed over ID.3 to its first owner and the ID.4 production as seen in the following picture has already started at the automaker’s Zwickau manufacturing plant.
As Tesla is willing to ramp the Tesla Model Y production at the Gigafactory Berlin to 500,000 units/year in the coming years. Volkswagen is also aiming for the same number of ID.4 vehicles produced and sold till 2025.
Volkswagen wants to become the world market leader in e-mobility – but that won’t happen by itself. The Volkswagen brand is therefore investing around 11 billion euros by 2024. As a compact SUV, the ID.4 has, in our view, the best prerequisites for being successful in a large scale in all important markets. We, therefore, expect the Volkswagen brand to produce a total of 1.5 million e-cars per year by 2025. And the ID.4 is likely to account for around a third of this. The ID.4 will thus become the driving force behind our reorientation a hundred thousand times over.Volkswagen CEO Ralf Brandstätter via a company press-release.
On the other end, Tesla CEO Elon Musk on his visit to Germany said that Model Y production at Giga Berlin will mark a radical shift in how cars are made. Part of this is revealed that Tesla plans to install giant casting machines at the German Gigafactory that will accelerate the production process manyfold.
The competition between these two automotive giants in the electric vehicle universe will be interesting to see in the near future.
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