What the ID.Life concept reveals about Volkswagen’s design direction

One of the stars of the 2021 Munich auto show was the Volkswagen ID.Life, a concept designed to preview an entry-level electric car aimed at a relatively young target audience. While it might not hit production exactly as you see it in our gallery, it does illustrate the direction the German company’s design language will take in the years to come.

What stands out when you look at the ID.Life is that it doesn’t share any styling with existing Volkswagen electric cars like the ID.4. It’s its own thing, with a handful of subtle retro touches if you look hard enough. Jozef Kabaň, head of company design, said Autoblog it was intentional; his team’s goal was not to make an ID.3. It was about creating a crossover with a timeless design, and that was especially important because of the technology inside.

“Cars these days are technologically always on the air, they get live updates so your car is always fresh, so it would be a shame if the design became [outdated]. We wanted to work even more on this, ”explained Kabaň, describing the train of thought that shaped ID.Life. He noted that making a car with a strong character doesn’t always mean overloading it with unnecessary styling cues and additions. , and Life illustrates it well inside and out.

Going forward, this design approach will permeate the rest of the Volkswagen lineup to varying degrees.

“Volkswagen’s design language must always evolve in a more timeless direction. It matches the brand,” said Kabaň. “We want to be genuine and clear and use real materials; there are no fakes of any kind or trying to look like anything else. Fake tailpipes, fake wood, etc. We want that our cars are well balanced, “he added. .

This is not the first time that Volkswagen has built a concept to showcase the fun side of its modular MEB platform. He wowed us with the ID.Buggy, a heritage-inspired design study unveiled in 2019 that gave a modern twist to the concept of a dune buggy – and introduced a whole new world of bodied cars. Production was tentatively scheduled to start with the help of a third party until obstacles put the project on hold, but the Buggy is not yet dead. Ralf Brandstätter, CEO of the Volkswagen brand, said Autoblog that the future of the concept car is “still under discussion”.

As for Life, the production model to which it will transform should land in showrooms in 2025.

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