Volkswagen is developing a new ‘people’s car’, only this time it’ll be electric.

An ID.1 and ID.2 will slot in underneath the ID.3, reports Autocar, and will use a new ‘Lite’ version of the company’s MEB electric vehicle architecture with batteries up to 45kWh in capacity.

Volkswagen CEO Ralf Brandstätter says the company is targeting a starting price of €19,834 (A$32,089).

The Volkswagen ID.3 range currently opens in Europe at €34,112 (A$55,190) and the smallest capacity battery available is a 45kWh unit.

The ID.1 and ID.2 – as they’re expected to be called – will be the electric counterparts to the Polo and T-Cross, with the ID.1 replacing the e-Up as the opener into VW’s EV range.

They’re expected to be introduced no sooner than 2023 and will be joined by small EVs for the Seat and Skoda brands, to replace the Mii Electric and Citigo-e iV, respectively.

Skoda has already discontinued its e-Up-based model, while the Mii Electric and e-Up itself are also expected to be axed shortly.

Development of the new, small electric models was initially set to be spearheaded by Seat and co-developed with Chinese company JAC.

With Seat’s entry into the Chinese market delayed, the Volkswagen Group reassigned the project to the Volkswagen brand.

Brandstätter has said Volkswagen will still work with its various Chinese joint venture partners to develop the EVs, however.

The plan for the defunct Seat project, announced last March, was for the Spanish brand to develop an electric city car that would cost less than €20,000 (A$33,686), measure less than 4000mm long, and use a heavily modified version of the MEB architecture.

The Volkswagen Group is focusing heavily on its ambitious rollout of electric vehicles, with around 70 due to be released by 2030.

The company is investing €35 billion (A$57 billion) in the development of battery-electric vehicles alone over the next five years, while also investing an additional €11 billion (A$17.9 billion) in hybrid vehicles and €27 billion (A$43.9 billion) in software.

The Volkswagen brand plans to introduce its ID.4 mid-sized SUV here before the small ID.3 hatchback, even though the latter is already on sale in Europe.

The ID.4 will touch down locally in either 2022 or 2023.

William Stopford

William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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