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"The vehicle for the new era is here", said Diess.
Marking the official start of VW's hoped-for redemption, the carmaker is intent on doing it right.
The company says the four-seater vehicle has two electric motors that accelerate it to 100 kph (62 mph) in 4.5 seconds and an exceptional battery range of 700 kilometres (435 miles.) Kallenius declined to specify how the company achieved range beyond what other electrics now offer.
The twin steps - both heavy with symbolism - reflect the high stakes involved in Volkswagen's ambitions to become the world's electric-car leader just four years after the diesel-cheating scandal plunged it into the worst crisis in its history.
The first edition - the ID.3 1st - has a 58kWh battery which is driven by an electric motor at the rear axle.
Diess introduces the ID.3. Source Volkswagen
What appeared in the sketch to be cameras forward of the front doors in place of rear vision mirrors are gone however, and what were presumably some kind of sensors enclosed in circular covers on the roof are also gone.
The ID.3 will be built at VW's Zwickau plant in Germany, with company executives saying production will be carbon neutral. "It combines exciting design with innovative technology and significant range".
The five seater's long wheelbase and short overhangs offer lots of space.
"A central 10" digital display is complimented by steering wheel controls allows access to all key features and info about the vehicle. "The natural style and absolutely intuitive driver experience demonstrate a new, electric way of thinking". In time, there will also be a smaller-battery 45kWh, 205-mile (330km) variant and a 341-mile (550km) 77kWh version. All range ratings are converted from kilometers and calculated on the European WLTP system. Volkswagen will also offer a 58 kW battery variant which will offer a range of up to 420 km. Thanks to its fast charging capability, it is possible to charge the ID.3 sufficiently for a range of around 290km within 30 minutes, using a charging output of 100kW. Production of the ID.3 is to start, as planned, at the end of 2019 and the first vehicles are to be delivered to customers in mid-2020.
The AR-HUD is part of the premium version of the ID.3 1ST - since the special model is available in three different versions.
The Volkswagen ID.3 also marks the beginning of a EV-specific design direction to herald the automaker's new models with zero emissions and full connectivity, which will be carried through the rest of the forthcoming ID range. It also gets a lane-keeping assist, comfort seats, wireless phone charging and a level luggage compartment floor.
Although Diess said in October that Volkswagen would "come in 2020 with vehicles that can do anything like Tesla and are cheaper by half", the first edition ID.3 is clearly not this vehicle, with the Model 3 SR+ in Germany now starting at €43,390 (just onder $A70,000 converted) before on-road costs.
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