For now, most of the electric vehicle (EV) proposals and the small number of production models are mostly street-going passenger cars. But with ‘electrification’ gaining speed in the industry, it’s only a matter of time before we see electrically-powered dual-purpose vehicles as well.

At Auto Shanghai this week, Volkswagen is showing what a future crossover SUV powered by only an electric motor could be like. In fact, it says that the I.D. CROZZ, as the concept SUV is called, will be produced from 2020 as the brand’s first electrically powered crossover utility vehicle (CUV) – a coupe and SUV in one.

After the premieres of the I.D. (Paris, 2016) and I.D. BUZZ (Detroit, 2017), the I.D. CROZZ follows as the third member of the I.D. family – a new generation of zero emission vehicles with long driving range, charismatic electric mobility design and a new cabin environment.

The I.D. CROZZ was conceptualised as a sporty, interactively designed zero-emission all-rounder – with electric all-wheel drive that promises to be equally impressive in the urban environment as it is on the tracks of an active lifestyle.

The powertrain has a 225 kw output to give a top speed capability of 180 km/h and a range of up to 500 km on one full battery charge is claimed. The high-performance battery can be charged to 80% of its energy capacity in 30 minutes using a fast-charging system, which addresses one of the issues that discourages people from buying an EV.

Goodyear Duraplus

The 4-door concept car switches over to the fully autonomous ‘I.D. Pilot’ mode when the driver touches the VW badge on the steering wheel for 3 seconds. In this mode, the car will be on ‘autopilot’ with no involvement by the driver.

All of the concept vehicle’s instruments and controls have been implemented fully digitally. A smartphone on wheels. The most important information is projected into the driver’s visual field by augmented reality. Gesture control is gaining in importance. A newly developed light shade in the transparent panoramic sunroof is even activated by gesture control; the shade offers a new form of interior and exterior ambient lighting. Meanwhile, a new CleanAir system continually guarantees good air quality in the vehicle – in all outdoor conditions.

Volkswagen Showcar I.D. CROZZ

Volkswagen Showcar I.D. CROZZ

Volkswagen Showcar I.D. CROZZ

The zero emission design of the I.D. CROZZ expresses its electric mobility DNA in every component. One dominant visual characteristic is the light signature for Volkswagen electric mobility. The light elements – C-shaped LED daytime running lights and variably controllable LED headlights – merge to form a front end with electronic moving ‘eyes’ (‘Interactive Spotlight’). In ‘I.D. Pilot’ mode, these ‘eyes’ communicate with other road users.

Volkswagen Showcar I.D. CROZZ

Sizewise, the I.D. CROZZ is a more compact SUV than the Tiguan L (the longer variant) but is said to offer just as much space. This is because the I.D. CROZZ is based on the new, innovative, next-generation architecture for Volkswagen electric vehicles. The suspension and drivetrain modules are positioned far to the outsides of the vehicle and exhibit very compact construction, while the battery is fully integrated in the floor.

The seat configuration offers great flexibility. It creates space that can be put to optimal use – a generously proportioned and newly designed ‘Open Space’, which exceeds typical class standards. The rear has ‘premium class dimensions’, able to accommodate a bicycle crosswise in the rear seating area. Fold-up rear seats and doors that open (electrically) very wide make this possible.

Volkswagen has set the clearly defined goal of advancing electric drive vehicles from the status of a start-up niche to large-scale production models by the middle of the next decade in a worldwide product offensive.

Click here to see other concept cars.

The I.D. CROZZ won’t be in showrooms till 2020 but you can experience other Volkswagen models today at Wearnes Automotive and other authorised Volkswagen dealers in Malaysia (visit www.volkswagen.com.my to locate a showroom).

[Chips Yap]

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