Volkswagen ID 3 2023 first drive

Power comes from the same rear-mounted electric motor as before. It continues to develop 204bhp and 228lb ft in both the ID 3 Pro and Pro S, which receive 58.0kWh and 77.0kWh lithium ion batteries respectively.

Step-off response is urgent, making the ID 3 feel agreeably nippy around town, where the facelifted Volkswagen model feels most at home.

Open-road performance is also satisfying thanks to the flexible nature of the drivetrain and impressive refinement. The drivetrain is hushed, there are relatively low levels of tyre roar and wind noise at higher speeds is only moderate.

The facelifted ID 3 Pro S steers with lightness but precision, although there is little in the way of actual feedback. A well-damped chassis provides it with impressive body control over more challenging roads. There’s also a good deal of front-end grip, which enables predictable and dependable handling. In the end, though, its cornering ability is limited by its 1933kg kerb weight.

There’s a firmness to the ride, which can make the ID 3 feel somewhat unsettled over high-frequency bumps at lower speeds. However, its ability to cope with potholes and the like improves with speed – to the point where the new 2024 model feels well controlled and quite mature, with excellent isolation of road shock out on the open road by class standards.

You can alter the amount of energy recuperation and braking effect by calling up the battery mode via the gear selector mounted on the end of the 5.3in instrument display. A combined WLTP cycle range of 347 miles gives the Pro S more than token long-distance potential. By comparison, the MG 4 Long Range offers a WLTP range of 281 miles from its 61.7kWh battery.

An increase in the DC charging rate, from 125kW to 170kW, also reduces the ID 3 Pro S’s battery recharging time on a high-powered charger.

Until now, the ID 3 has been somewhat of a work in progress. But with the introduction of the facelifted model, Volkswagen finally appears to have delivered the electric-powered alternative to the Golf that it promised all along. The improvements over the original ID 3 are subtle, but they do help to lift its appeal in key areas. At £42,870 in Pro S guise, though, it remains a rather expensive proposition next to many of its more comprehensively equipped electric car rivals.

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