VW kicks off its high-performance electric family with ID.4 GTX

Twin-motor set-up gives the GTX version 299hp of power

While VW hasn’t announced Irish prices yet, based on German prices itwould probably pitch the car at €55,000-€60,000 in Ireland

While VW hasn’t announced Irish prices yet, based on German prices itwould probably pitch the car at €55,000-€60,000 in Ireland

 

This is the moment we’ve been waiting, steadily, ever since Volkswagen announced its all-electric destiny, for the sporty models - the GTIs with batteries - to come along, and now the GTX brand is here.

“Following on from the GTI and GTE, the GTX label is the next chapter in Volkswagen’s successful history of sporty flagship models” says the official VW statement, so here at last is a GTI without the guilt.

And it’s… er… well, it appears to be an ID.4 electric SUV with some snazzy red paint. Technically, it’s ‘Metallic Kings Red’ which Volkswagen helpfully points out is a new colour for the ID lineup, and it’ll be set off by a contrast-black roof, and some 20-inch (optionally 21-inch) alloy wheels. Oh, and a GTX badge on the back. I mean, it’s not what you’d call super-aggressive…

Then again, the classic Golf GTI wasn’t a car that necessarily shouted about its sportiness. It preferred to speak softly and carry a big fuel-injected stick. The ID.4 GTX does something similar - it uses the same large 77kWh battery as the more expensive models in the ID.4 range, but adds an extra electric motor, mounted between the front wheels.

Combined with the usual rear-mounted electric motor, it gives the ID.4 GTX 299hp, compared to the standard model’s single-motor, 204hp layout. VW hasn’t given us a total torque figure for the GTX just yet, but does claim that it will hit 100km/h from rest in 6.2secs (the standard ID.4 does that sprint in 8.5secs) and has a 180km/h top speed (assuming you REALLY want to run that battery flat in jig-time).

Sportiness

What it doesn’t seem to have is a lot of sportiness beyond that. There is talk of a sports suspension setup, which drops the ID.4 GTX 15mm closer to the ground than normal and sharpens up the steering, but that’s an option. Optional too are adaptive dampers, although all GTX versions will get a switchable driving mode system that will allow you to choose between Eco, Comfort, Sport, Individual and Traction profiles.

Because of the extra performance (and weight) the GTX’s range is trimmed a little - a standard 77kWh ID.4 will put 520km between charge-ups (according to the WLTP test) but the GTX will manage a ‘mere’ 480km. As with the standard model, it will charge rapidly, at speeds of up to 125kW if you can find a charger with sufficient output. Hook it up to an IONITY rapid charger (VW is an investor in the IONITY group) and you can add 300km of range in just 30-minutes. For charging at home, the GTX gets an 11kW on-board charger.

Aside from the bright red paint (you can also have white, various versions of grey, and a dark blue) there are new LED lights stacked in the front air intakes, a new rear diffuser, and a smattering of GTX badges, including the letters stitched into the seats. As with almost all VW GTI models, there’s also some red contrast stitching inside but, alas, no tartan seats.

While VW hasn’t announced Irish prices yet, in Germany the GTX will sell for €42,915 including rebates. That would probably pitch it at around €55,000-€60,000 in Ireland, depending on how the equipment levels shake out.

Here’s the question though - VW clearly has plans for the GTX brand, as it will sit alongside GTI and GTE in the lineup and be applied to more models than just the ID.4 The original GTI created an unmatched halo effect around the first Golf, one that was crucial to VW’s longer-term conversion into a quasi-premium brand. Will the ID.4 GTX have the same effect? Or are we still waiting for the true electric successor to that original hot Golf?