Volkswagen officials have reportedly alluded to plans to produce high-performance versions of the ID.3 electric hatchback, whose sporting variants will parallel those of the current Golf: a quicker GTI variant, and an even more powerful, all-wheel-drive "R" model.
Volkswagen Board member Jürgen Stackmann told Autocar that while the ID.3 GTI and R shouldn't be expected immediately, as the expertise to develop them doesn't yet exist within Volkswagen, sporting ID.3s are to be expected within five years.
"If there is a future for R it must be electric, it's very simple. It won't be next year, because we need to define what R is in the electric world," said Stackmann, who also confirmed plans for a plug-in hybrid Touareg R.
"We should have the same as cars such as the Golf, the GTI and R. People like performance and I'm sure people will love performance in ID cars too," added Volkswagen board member Frank Welsch in the same interview.
"The situation is different—even in the normal ID[.3], we have good performance right from the very beginning, you just touch the pedal and you feel the punch. From zero to 60 kilometers[ per hour, it] is like the GTI. No GTI is faster than the ID.3. At the upper end [sic], of course, GTI is better."
Stackmann added, "Today, if you look at high performance and electric, it's actually a huge compromise, and you pay the penalty with a small range. We should be able to deliver something meaningful in under five years but it takes a team of developers, and it's turf without a lot of expertise at the moment. We have to start that journey."
Volkswagen definitely has the hot-hatch expertise to pull off such a feat, especially being the progenitors of the hot-hatch movement with the original Golf GTI.
That journey, though, doesn't yet include America where both the GTI and R claim a rabid fanbase as at present, Volkswagen doesn't plan to sell this groundbreaking model in the United States. Maybe given the fact that the U.S. is supposed to get the ID.Buzz down the line means sometime in the future we'll get the ID.3 and its potential hot-hatch variants.
We can only hope.