Volkswagen’s cars will be cheaper – but not worse

This year, Volkswagen has managed to exist a full 75 years on the Swedish market, and during that time has produced cars in a number of different formats.

In recent years, the focus has largely been on expensive and, frankly, rather mundane electric cars.

However, the brand’s recent design studies have had more personality, and perhaps Andreas Mildt, who recently returned to Volkswagen from Bentley, has something to do with that.

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Want to be the most likable on the market

Mindt began by giving a picture of Volkswagen’s brand philosophy, which revolves around being the most likable car brand on the market with a design you can trust.

You will never be the sportiest, most luxurious or most futuristic car brand, but you are happy to be the brand with the nicest appearance.

We were there when the ID.GTI was shown in Stockholm. Photo: Peter Esse

The cars must therefore, among other things, have a stable but friendly appearance, offer good value for money, and have an underlying sportiness.

Mindt also mentioned that it plans to reintroduce physical buttons to the interior instead of focusing too much on touch controls, which will be appreciated by many.

The ID.GTI concept in place

At the center of the presentation was the ID.GTI concept car, which was also present in the venue.

The GTI cars are one of the brand’s most successful and legendary car series and started with the Golf GTI MK1 in 1978. At the time, the GTI model was an experiment expected to be sold in only 5,000 copies. At the time of writing, over 2.3 million GTI cars have been produced.

However, they have never produced a fully electric GTI, but the ID.GTI has, at first glance, good conditions to carry on the legacy with its tough appearance and a nice, compact format.

Simplify and refine

The ID.GTI concept is based on the ID.2all concept car, which was launched at the beginning of the year and attracted attention for its intended price tag of under 25,000 euros.

This is cheap for a modern electric car, and according to Mildt, the key to cheaper cars that still maintain good quality is to create cars with a simpler design.

This is to be achieved by creating more stripped-down designs where unnecessary components are removed, while at the same time raising the quality of the remaining components.

The fact that the door handle is in the C-pillar benefits both the appearance and the price tag. Photo: VolkswagenStraight, rational choices

An example is the handles on the rear doors which sit on the C-pillar instead of on the door panel itself. This not only means that the car will have a cleaner appearance, but also means that the door will be significantly easier to manufacture.

With the handle on the door panel, you have to divide the window in the door into a fixed part and an openable part, because the locking mechanism is otherwise in the way when you roll down the window.

Under the hood, Mildt also pointed out that the ID.2 will only be offered with front-wheel drive. The layout means that virtually all technology is gathered in the front parts of the car, which allows for a simpler and shorter tangle of cables.

On the road 2026

Although the concept car we got to see according to Mindt is about 90th of a production-ready one in terms of appearance, it will unfortunately be a while before the ID.2 and ID.GTI hit the road.

As it takes a long time to get a new car approved for street use, as well as to develop stable software, Volkswagen estimates that we will have to wait until 2026 before we can drive the cars.

We wait with excitement, as both the ID.2all and its GTI sibling have the potential to be two nice and affordable wagons.