Volkswagen ID.5 review

Jul 3, 2023

Volkswagen ID.5 review

We get behind the wheel of the VW ID.5 – the “style-focused coupe-SUV” version of the ID.4…

Apart from that sexy roofline, the ID.5 is basically the same car as the ID.4 crossover, which is no bad thing. The latter is, after all, a very tidy family EV.

The ID.5 is also pitched at a slightly more upmarket alternative to the ID.4, and this is reflected in the pricing.

Volkswagen ID.5 review

The ID.4 starts at £38,845, while the ID.5 will set you back at least £50,710.

Additionally, the ID.5 is only available with a 77kWh battery, while the ID.4 gets a cheaper 52kWh option too.

There are three versions of the ID.5: Pro (expected to be the biggest-seller), Pro Performance and GTX. The former are both rear-wheel drive with a single electric motor, while the range-topping GTX gets dual motors and all-wheel drive (4Motion in VW-speak).

Volkswagen ID.5 review

Power outputs range from 172bhp (Pro) and 201bhp (Pro Performance), to 295bhp for the GTX.

The entry-level versions can travel a claimed 327 miles on a full charge, while the more performance-orientated GTX manages a still healthy 314 miles.

Naturally, the latter is also the fastest (0-62mph in 6.3 seconds) with the cheaper versions coming in at 10.4s and 8.4s respectively.

Volkswagen ID.5 review

First impressions are good. The ID.5 has serious kerb appeal thanks to its sharper profile, and we like the way the rear spoiler is integrated into the tailgate. It’s just a shame that there’s no rear wiper.

The ID.5’s cabin is virtually unchanged from that of the ID.4, which considering the price hike is a bit disappointing. It’s not flash, but it does the job.

It’s minimalist up front with few physical controls. There’s a gear selector mounted on the little driver’s instrument pod, while almost all the car’s functionality is accessed via the 12-inch infotainment touchscreen and a few touch-sensitive switches below, plus controls on the steering wheel.

Volkswagen ID.5 review

The infotainment system on the ID.5 has been updated, promising faster response times. Indeed, it is slicker, but the controversial touch-slider heating controls (below the touchscreen and on the steering wheel) are as frustrating as ever.

On the plus side, the cabin generally feels spacious and the front seats are comfortable and supportive with plenty of adjustment.

And the good news is that the coupe-SUV styling has not affected headroom as dramatically as you might think, so a six-footer can sit behind a driver of the same height.

Volkswagen ID.5 review

There’s also a useful 549 litres of boot space, rising to 1,561 litres with the rear seats folded.

Visibility isn’t perfect thanks to chunky front and rear pillars, plus the slim rear window, but all-round parking sensors and a clear rear-view camera help when manoeuvring.

There’s also a clever Park Assist Plus system with memory function, which means the car can remember parking procedures at speeds below 25mph, so ideal for parking on your drive.

Volkswagen ID.5 review

Trim levels for the ID.5 span from the entry-grade Style, progressing through to Tech, moving up to Max, and then the GTX Style sitting beneath the range-topping GTX Max. VW reckons Tech will be the top-selling ID.5 trim, and is expected to take around half of UK sales.

Our ID.5 201bhp Pro Performance test car (predicted to account for around a third of sales) was a good blend of performance and affordability.

On the road the ID.5 isn’t quite as sporty as its looks suggest. Swift, rather than blisteringly fast, it’s easy and pleasant to drive.

Volkswagen ID.5 review

Grip is impressive for a rear-wheel drive EV and the firm suspension limits body lean in faster corners, but its handling in general isn’t class leading.

That said, it feels agile enough in urban environments and cruises along nicely on motorways with impressive levels of refinement, while the steering is light and precise, and the turning circle is tight for a fairly big car.

There are three drive modes – Eco, Comfort and Sport – and you can select ‘B’ rather than ‘D’ for increased brake regeneration.

Thankfully, these modes can be changed at the touch of a button. Comfort is just fine, though the occasional range-sapping burst in firmer Sport spices up things a bit, while Eco is best left for motorway runs in cruise control.

Volkswagen ID.5 review

Puzzlingly, the brake pedal takes a bit of getting used to. Just like the bigger ID.Buzz, it has a relatively long travel, which means that slowing down isn’t always the slickest of operations.

The ID.5 is capable of charging at speeds up to 135kW (much less than the 350kW charging capability of the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6). In theory, a boost up to 80% at 135kW will take around half an hour. Naturally, it will also charge overnight via a home wallbox.

We tested the ID.5 during a winter cold snap, so we couldn’t match the claimed range or charging speed. Even so, a very respectable real-world range of 250 miles+ should be quite possible for most of the year.

The ID.5 is very well equipped and packed with safety and driver assistance systems.

Awarded a five-star safety rating by Euro NCAP, there’s an autonomous emergency (AEB) braking system that recognises other vehicles and vulnerable road users, road sign recognition, traffic jam assist, adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist and lane-change assist – to name but a few.

Rivals include its Volkswagen Group cousins, the Skoda Enyaq iV Coupe and the Audi Q4 Sportback e-tron, plus the Kia EV6, Tesla Model Y, Volvo C40 Recharge and Hyundai Ioniq 5.

Verdict: The Volkswagen ID.5 is a comfortable, spacious and safe all-rounder that comes with plenty of kit and a good range. It may not deliver the most engaging of drives in standard form, but it’s a stylish, sensible SUV choice.

Volkswagen UK

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