VW is considering to allow European customers placing a deposit for the upcoming ID electric hatchback in the next few months, ahead of the model’s official market launch in early 2020.
The models produced during the initial six months will be allocated on a first-come, first-serve basis instead of VW shipping them to showrooms, said VW brand sales chief Juergen Stackmann to Automotive News.
The deposit won’t be a large amount of money, Stackmann added, but it won’t be too little either, as VW will require a “serious commitment” from its customers.
While it’s easy to see VW’s pre-booking plan as a marketing trick to increase interest in the first ID-badged electric VW, Stackmann was quick to point that customers in EV-friendly countries like Norway and the Netherlands are expected to jump at the chance of booking early their car.
“We have tested it several times in Norway and the customers want it. It’s surprising but people in Norway and Holland want to be a part of it. Germany is definitely not the pacemaker in Europe,” he said. He then added that VW’s sales team in Norway expects around 10,000 deposits for the ID hatchback.
Tesla used the concept of pre-booking with the Model 3 with great success but critics said that the program provided short-term liquidity to a company that’s known to burn cash at an alarming rate. However, VW doesn’t face any issues with either its manufacturing capacity nor its finances.
The new VW ID hatchback will have a similar size to a VW Golf but will feature around 100mm longer wheelbase, offering more room in the cabin. VW has previously said that its price will be roughly the same to a diesel-powered Golf, although it didn’t specify which one.
The company did promise however that their first electric vehicle will offer a driving range of between 205 miles (330km) and 342 miles (550km), depending on the battery capacity.