Upon the launch of the Volkswagen ID.7, it received high praise from international media following test drives. They claimed it could compete with luxury brands like the Benz EQE and even bestowed upon the ID.7 the title of ‘Best EV Sedan’.
Even I, a longstanding Volkswagen owner, found it hard to believe. How could Volkswagen, a brand typically associated with the domestic market, dare to draw a comparison with the benchmark of German luxury like Benz?
However, the domestic FAW-Volkswagen ID.7 VIZZION has just been launched. It boasts a design identical to the overseas ID.7 and is priced at 227.8 – 262.8 thousand yuan, roughly half of a Benz EQE in Beijing. This naturally piqued my interest. Could the ID.7 which has arrived in our country really be as amazing as the foreign media claims?
Coincidentally, an ID.7 VIZZION recently arrived and a member of the editorial team purchased a Benz EQE 350. With all the conditions met, I assumed the role of rumor debunker to see if the German vehicles could live up to the hype generated by foreign media.
The ID.7 Interior Is Anything But Ordinary
B-level Classification with C-class Interior Space
Given this comparison, the EQE owner, who parted with real money for his vehicle, feels no pressure at all. When discussing interior spaciousness, the EQE owner feels that the C-class EQE and B-class ID.7 VIZZION are incomparable.
If we look at the basic specifications, the Benz EQE, being a higher classification, doesn’t exceed the ID.7 VIZZION by much in terms of body size. However, the EQE boasts a 155mm advantage in wheelbase, which places it in the C-class category.
However, in terms of actual interior space, the ID.7 VIZZION comes out on top. I’m 1.75 meters tall and weigh 65 kilograms. Under my optimal driving seat position, there is still room for a palm’s width plus a clenched fist in the rear leg space of the ID.7. The Benz EQE couldn’t leverage its longer wheelbase to provide more legroom.
The main reason here is that the Benz EQE, in order to optimize air resistance, has extended the front of the car and the L113 section, thereby sacrificing some wheelbase utilization, but has polished a drag coefficient of 0.22. In terms of air resistance coefficient, the Volkswagen ID.7 VIZZION does not strive for an ultimate score, but strikes a balance between air resistance and space utilization. Its drag of Cd 0.23 is not as good as Benz’s, but the rear space offers an exceptional experience.
Most of the current sedans adopt a fastback design in order to optimize wind resistance. Here, the fastback design of the ID.7 VIZZION is one of the few practical liftback designs. The advantage of this is that it can achieve a very substantial trunk volume and large opening. Moreover, a larger opening means a more convenient experience when carrying luggage and items.
Under the liftback design, the ID.7 achieves a more generous headspace by using a height of 1,537 mm. Even under my regular rear seating, there is ample space for the head. So, looking at this rear seat space, even people with larger physical sizes should have no problem.
The backrest angle and cushion length of the ID.7 VIZZION’s rear seats are very suitable. The tilt angle of the backrest is just right, and provides appropriate support to the passenger’s back; the cushion length is also sufficient to support the thighs of the passenger, avoiding the bench-like feeling that many electric cars have.
Likewise, the support and wrap-around capability of the ID.7 VIZZION front seats is exceptional, with a high degree of fit from the legs to the waist and then to the back.
Seating comfort and space utilization can be described as a car’s fundamentals. The ID.7 VIZZION’s execution of this part is excellent, as befits a venerable brand. Stepping into the car, the cockpit configuration is a point of concern for many.### Emphasizing on Cockpit Configuration
Traditionally, whether it’s a joint venture brand or a luxury marque, the comfort features have tended to be stingy. But compared to previous Volkswagen models, the features provided on the ID.7 VIZZION offer a bit more sincerity.
Take for example our ID.7 VIZZION Pro edition. Its smart cockpit comes with a standard 15-inch, 2K-resolution screen. Finally, Volkswagen has made significant enhancements in its intelligent car machine department, whether it’s voice control, screen quality or expandability, improvements are substantial. Although its functions aren’t as extensive as those from new forces, it has already attained the mainstream level.
Volkswagen employed an automatic air direction conditioning called smartair in the car system, where you could adjust the direction of air conditioning via the screen. Uniquely, this air conditioning system also links up with a camera to determine the direction of the sun, automatically adjusting air direction, somewhat like a sunflower. This feature could somewhat alleviate discomfort from body temperature.
Simultaneously, the Pro edition priced at 237,000 RMB also equips a three-zone air conditioning system and backseat heating feature, which are especially practical for older family members seated at the back. These few backseat features are regretfully missing in the Benz EQE.
Currently, customers purchasing the Pro edition are also gifted a Harmon Kardon sound system worth 4,000 RMB, which is quite unusual for a midrange Volkswagen. The real-life music experience also offers decent surround sound and pop-music feelings.
The least Volkswagen-like aspect in the cockpit this time is the adoption of a highly expensive smart light-sensing panoramic roof. Through electric control, it can be instantly fogged up. The fogged-up effect is somewhat similar to having the sunshade on, creating a frosted sensation. But after fogging, it’s more light-permeable than the sunshade, making the interior less oppressive. Plus, its ultraviolet isolation rate could exceed 99.9%, so, you don’t have to worry too much about intense heat in the summer.Comfort configuration is the first step towards luxury, and a poor subjective user experience is futile. Originally, the interior impression of Volkswagen was very modest. After driving the ID.7 VIZZION for a while, as an ID.3 owner, I feel that Volkswagen has also started to work on interior decorations.
Firstly, in terms of interior materials, they have used a lot of mixed materials. Apart from ordinary leather, they have also used a lot of super-fibre leather to wrap the entire central console, including the door frame and knee pads. Everywhere that can be touched while driving feels pretty premium.
In the ordinary interior trim panels, there are even laser-engraved ambient light patterns which are really quite premium when lit up. In the realm of ambient lighting, Benz, as a benchmark luxury brand, has the most say, and after comparing with the EQE, the ambient experience created by the ID.7 VIZZION is not bad.
This time, Volkswagen’s improvements in the ID.7 VIZZION configuration and materials are noticeable. As a 200k level pure electric saloon, the space utilization, configuration, design all stick to Volkswagen’s persistence, including innovative attempts, resulting in a real experience that disrupts everyone’s traditional perception of Volkswagen, it is now capable of competing with luxury brands.
New Height of MEB Platform Tuning
Last year, when foreign media test-drove the car, a question arose: “What would be different if the Volkswagen ID.7 is compared with more expensive models from FAW Audi, BMW, and Benz?”
In fact, the chassis tuning of the Volkswagen ID. series has already gained a good reputation in the market, but when it comes to brand and tuning, it’s fine to give new forces a shot, but if you really want to compare with century-old luxury brands, I believe most people, like me, would instinctively think this is a fanciful idea.
In terms of chassis hardware, the combination of the ID.7’s front MacPherson independent suspension + rear multi-link independent suspension is as ordinary as it can be at this price level. I’ve driven quite a distance these days, and in terms of amplitude hardware, Volkswagen can really bring the ID.7 VIZZION’s chassis to a new height from the foundation of the ID.4/6.Firstly, the chassis tuning adopts the firm style characteristic of German cars, with the rigidity of the ID.7 VIZZION prominently manifesting in its direct suspension filtering and clear road feel. For instance, on bumpy roads, the suspension absorbs and rebounds crisply, exhibiting negligible fluctuations. This characteristic makes for an exhilarating driving experience.
However, firm suspension doesn’t necessarily mean a rough ride. Although the road feel inside the car is quite tactile, the vibrations and jolts that actually transmit to the seats are not often noticeable. This is an area where the Volkswagen ID.7 VIZZION excels. The car handles bumpy roads deftly with its supple filtering that rapidly absorbs shocks, ensuring a comfortable driving experience. Furthermore, all doors of the ID.7 are fitted with laminated glass, effectively suppressing any NVH from the chassis.
From a driver’s standpoint, the ID.7 fosters a very engaging driving atmosphere, especially through its abundant communication with the driver via the steering. The overall steering feel is a tad heavy but aligns well with expectations. This contributes to a confidence-inspiring sense of control when driving aggressively.
The ID.7 VIZZION also retains the advantage of the MEB platform’s large steering angle. Even when directly comparing it with the rear-wheel steering Mercedes Benz EQE, there is a mere difference of about 10 centimeters post stable U-turn. This means that, whether you’re parking or navigating through old residential areas, the 5-meter-long car never feels too imposing.
On the powertrain front, the most widely-used rear-wheel-drive single-engine model still carries the APP310 motor, with a maximum power of 150 kW and peak torque of 310 N•m. Volkswagen is yet to introduce the latest APP550 motor (210 kW power, 545 N•m torque) into the domestic market. The 210 kW power is more in line with the current mainstream standards of pure electric cars in the country. Thus, we look forward to Volkswagen expeditiously starting production and incorporating it into domestically manufactured models.
Nevertheless, the power output tuning of the current motor configuration is quite on point. The ID.7 VIZZION’s pedal travel is lengthy and the linearity is commendable, resulting in excellent power output and kinetic energy recovery. This makes the car easy to handle for both novice and experienced drivers. Additionally, thanks to the motor’s characteristics, the car performs briskly in urban areas. If you require acceleration in the mid-to-late speed range, the dual-motor four-wheel-drive ID.7 VIZZION PRIME version can satisfy your needs.
In day-to-day scenarios, overall, the ID.7 VIZZION gives the impression of perfectly tuned suspension stretch calibration, an excellent NVH experience, thereby delivering the quality expected of a German sedan.
After a round of comparison, FAW-Volkswagen ID.7 VIZZION has created a commendable driving experience, whether it be basic design, ergonomics or driving aspects.
The ID.7, test-driven by foreign media in Germany, essentially matches with the PRO version home, with AR HUD, bigger battery, light-sensitive overhead, Harman/Kardon and others. After optional extras, its price rises to 67,000 euros, equivalent to a steep 527,000 yuan.
However, domestically, the FAW-Volkswagen ID.7 VIZZION is priced between 230,000 – 260,000 yuan, equivalent to half the price in Germany, which demonstrates the sincerity of Volkswagen’s domestic pricing. This segmentation directly puts the ID.7 VIZZION in this year’s most competitive 250,000 yuan family car market.
As it’s a family car, the ID.7 VIZZION, from this experience, fits well with the needs for space, practicality, and comfort. In addition, a more extensive range of customizable setting choices hasn’t left out the youth market. As a brand with years of operation in the domestic market, Volkswagen’s application of materials, tuning, and configuration settings on the ID.7 VIZZION better caters to the demand for vehicle quality among the Chinese, while also measuring up to the strength associated with medium to large-sized German sedans. Its price, only half of Germany’s, makes ID.7 VIZZION a key player in the Chinese family car market.
This article is a translation by AI of a Chinese report from 42HOW. If you have any questions about it, please email email@example.com.