As Volkswagen revs up its commercial fleet sales, the company is spotlighting its all-electric ID.4 SUV as an ideal fleet vehicle.
With abundant cargo space, an EPA estimated range of 275 miles and advanced1 driver assistance features, the ID.4 combines the comfort and utility of a compact SUV with the efficiency and benefits of a battery-electric vehicle, with no direct emissions.
12023 ID.4 Pro EPA estimated total range is 275 miles. Actual mileage and range will vary and depend on several factors including driving and charging habits, accessory use, temperature and topography, battery age, load, and vehicle condition. Battery capacity decreases with time and use. See owner’s manual for details.
The result is an EV that everyone can get on board with — from fleet managers and mechanics to drivers and even those inclined to compare it to an internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle.
“The ID.4 is a no-compromise car,” says Raghu Iyengar, Director of certified pre-owned and remarketing for Volkswagen of America. “It’s a very formidable alternative for fleets. It’s good for the company and you don’t have to climb into a tighter space..”
Promoting the ID.4 for the commercial fleet sector comes as VW has made major investments in the U.S. market in general, and in fleet and EV sales specifically.
Assembled in America
In 2019, Volkswagen launched an expansion of its assembly plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, which now serves as the German company’s North American base for assembling EVs.
In 2022, Volkswagen Chattanooga kicked off production of the model year 2023 ID.4, which became the company’s first EV assembled in the U.S. The vehicle’s battery pack that is assembled in Chattanooga using cells supplied by SK Innovation in Commerce, Georgia.
“Some people might not be aware that the ID.4 is now assembled in the U.S,” says Rachel Whitwell, ID.4 product manager.
VW’s battery-electric vehicle sales have been increasing year over year, with the company aiming for EVs to exceed 50% of its U.S. sales by 2030. Meanwhile, the company’s fleet sales are also on the upswing. VW had a banner year in the commercial fleet business in 2023, more than doubling its sales volume with a 138% increase from model year 2022 to 2023.
“We’re totally different from five years ago,” says Kurstan Sexton, national senior fleet operations specialist. “We’re more focused on the fleet market now.”
The company is gearing up for more growth next year. For model year 2024, VW will boost its allocation of vehicles for the commercial fleet market by 9%. The noteworthy growth is no accident. According to Iyengar, VW has been doubling down on building trust and long-term relationships with fleet customers. As one indicator of that effort, the company had zero orders canceled for commercial fleets in model year 2023.
Worry-Free Range and Charging
As it looks to make further inroads into the fleet market, VW is touting the benefits of its all-electric ID.4.
Fleet managers and drivers who worry about EV range can rest assured in the ID.4’s electric performance stats. The 2023 ID.4 Pro boasts an EPA-estimated range of 275 miles, meaning it can take on multiple shorter trips on one full charge.2
22023 ID.4 Pro EPA estimated total range is 275 miles. Actual mileage and range will vary and depend on several factors including driving and charging habits, accessory use, temperature and topography, battery age, load, and vehicle condition. Battery capacity decreases with time and use. See owner’s manual for details.
For longer excursions, the 2023 ID.4 can power up from 10% to 80% in about 30 to 36 minutes at a DC fast-charging station.3 On that front, fleets can take advantage of VW’s partnership with Electrify America.
3Charging times will vary and depend on a variety of factors, including ambient temperature, charger type, battery condition and initial state of charge, vehicle condition and others. Frequent and consecutive fast charging can permanently decrease battery capacity. Vehicles equipped with cells and modules supplied by SK On charge in about 30 min when charging at a 170kW or higher charger. Vehicles equipped with cells and modules supplied by LG Energy Solution charge in about 36 min when charging at a 135kW or higher charger. See Monroney Label (window sticker) for cell and module supplier.
As of September 2023, the company had nearly 1,000 charging stations along major highways and cross-country routes throughout the U.S., with more than 3,800 DC fast chargers. By the end of 2025, the company expects to have more than 1,700 stations with more than 9,500 chargers.
Electrify America also offers customized EV charging solutions for fleets, including custom layouts to accommodate a variety of vehicle sizes, and guidance for grant funding.
High Scores for Safety
For fleets, safety is paramount. In that arena, the ID.4 scores top marks.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the ID.4 a 2023 IIHS TOP SAFETY PICK+4, with the highest ratings in all crashworthiness categories, including front and side impact, roof strength, head restraints, and seats. The ID.4 also has earned a 5-star overall rating for the U.S. NCAP (New Car Assessment Program) test program.
4To qualify for 2023 TOP SAFETY PICK+, a vehicle must earn good ratings in the driver-side small overlap front, passenger-side small overlap front, original moderate overlap front and updated side tests. It also must earn an advanced or superior rating for both daytime and nighttime vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention and come with standard acceptable- or good-rated headlights. For vehicle test details visit www.iihs.org.
The ID.4 also comes equipped with safety-enhancing technology a, dubbed IQ.DRIVE5, that helps enhance the driving experience. Features include:
- Travel Assist
- Active Blind Spot Monitor
- Rear Traffic Alert
- Front Assist
- Emergency Assist
- Lane Assist
5Triggers driver assistance disclaimer: Driver Assistance features are not substitutes for attentive driving. See Owner’s Manual for further details, and important limitations.
“The standard driver assistance features on the ID.4 are very competitive and should be of interest to fleets,” Whitwell says. “These features can alert the driver of situations and help avoid potential collisions.”
Lower Operating and Ownership Costs
Fleets will also appreciate the reduced maintenance needs of the ID.4. Like other EVs, the ID.4 doesn’t use engine oil — meaning no oil changes — and for other fluids it requires fewer changes than gasoline or diesel vehicles.
Brakes are another area of advantage for EVs. The ID.4 harnesses the power of regenerative braking, which not only boosts efficiency — it can also reduce wear on the brakes.
“There are a lot of benefits in terms of maintenance,” Whitwell says. “The service cadence is similar to ICE vehicles, but with EVs it’s more about inspecting and double-checking the vehicle.”
Another benefit that makes the ID.4 cost-effective is two years or 20,000 miles of standard scheduled Carefree Maintenance6, which includes the manufacturer-recommended maintenance services during that period. “The dealer takes care of those at no cost,” Whitwell says.
6VW’s Carefree Maintenance program provides the 10,000- and 20,000-mile scheduled maintenance services or scheduled maintenance services for two years (whichever occurs first) as stated in the vehicle’s maintenance booklet on all MY20 and newer vehicles. See dealer or owner’s literature for provided services, exclusions, and time and other limitations. The Carefree Maintenance program does not provide tire rotations, or other services or parts not specified in the owner’s literature.
Maintenance is one of multiple factors that play into the ID.4’s total cost of ownership, along with its purchase price, day-to-day operating costs, and other considerations.
Cargo Space and Comfort
For fleets and retail customers alike, a couple of the key selling points of the ID.4 are its spaciousness and comfort.
While the ID.4 is not the longest or widest EV in the market, Whitwell explains that the efficiency of the space in the vehicle leads to more cargo room. Specifically, the ID.4 boasts 30.3 cubic feet of space behind the second-row of seats, or 64.2 cubic feet with the rear seats folded down — meaning fleet drivers can bring plenty of business along.
“It’s the everyday usability of the vehicle — allowing people to do whatever they need to in everyday life,” Whitwell says. “If you need to haul samples for clients, the space is there.”
Drivers also embrace the multiple levels of comfort that the ID.4 delivers. That includes its comfortable seats, spacious interior, and the way the vehicle handles on the road. “People who haven’t driven an EV really notice the drivability with the lower center of gravity and great turning radius,” Whitwell says.
Summing up what makes the ID.4 a fit for the fleet market, Whitwell calls it “a very well-rounded vehicle.”
“It has the price point, the space, great standard-level equipment and an EPA estimated range- of 275 miles,”she says.7 “It’s the EV that has what people are looking for in an everyday driver.”
72023 ID.4 Pro EPA estimated total range is 275 miles. Actual mileage and range will vary and depend on several factors including driving and charging habits, accessory use, temperature and topography, battery age, load, and vehicle condition. Battery capacity decreases with time and use. See owner’s manual for details.
Fleets can also look for even better performance coming soon. In model year 2024, VW will offer a new, higher performance drive unit on the ID.4 that is expected to improve range, acceleration, and horsepower.
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