Volkswagen ID.3: the loading and travel times of our Supertest

Volkswagen ID.3

The Volkswagen ID.3 no longer holds any secrets for you when it comes to autonomy after the first part of the Supertest† It remains to be seen how it behaves for fast charging stations and on long rides with this second part.

In order to shed light on electric cars and their consumption, we decided to conduct full-scale tests, driving each model studied for almost 2,000 km. An opportunity to measure the autonomy on long journeys on the highway, but also the mixed consumption and payload at the fast terminals. We have introduced a strict protocol for this per car.

Super testing of electric cars
our full test protocol

Charging curves of the Volkswagen ID.3: a “useful” full in 33 minutes

Except in the slow charging section, which the Volkswagen can’t compete with the Megane e-Tech, it has a DC fast charging power of 120 kW. That is barely 10 kW less than on the technical data sheet of the Renault. According to the brochure, the charging time from 5 to 80% is 35 minutes. In fact, the ID.3 keeps all its promises, and more: plugged in from 5%, the compact quickly climbed to a power of 131 kW † This is the maximum that we were able to observe during the test, on a Fastned terminal and without having activated the battery preheating.

Then follows a charging curve with a profile modeled after the other curves we observed, albeit with higher power values ​​of up to 2 kW at the intermediate SoCs. The power peak doesn’t last long, unfortunately, but the high powers hold up to 20% before forming a first step. It is from 25% that the curves of our full charges meet. However, despite hardly any lower powers, the charging times are comparable to the minute.

Ultimately, charging the Volkswagen ID.3 from 10-80% takes exactly 33 minutes. When it’s cold, peaking at 107 kW at 10%, the same type of charging only takes 1’30” more. Not enough to change a motorist’s life on the long journey. Especially since they will rarely fill up at a fast charging station in the early morning before departure. At this 70% load, the Volkswagen gained an average of 41.9 kWh according to the display of the terminals, or 40.6 kWh according to the strict rule of three taking into account the useful capacity of the battery. The difference is small.

DC fast charge curves

The curve forms an end plateau between 70 and 80%. Beyond that, it takes 10 minutes longer to reach 90%. In total, the total time is just under 59 minutes to complete a 10-100%. The percentage of hunting has its limits on the highway since, to go into detail, with the ID.3 you lose almost 20% in 43 km, of which 2% is only used when leaving the resting place.

Typical charging curve

Autonomy restored: 157 km in 30 minutes

According to our measurements, the Volkswagen ID.3 has a total autonomy of 243 km, or 170 km of useful autonomy. On a fast terminal, it is therefore able to recover 170 km of autonomy in 33 minutes. Always from a SoC of 10% it will be possible to gain 97 km in 15 min all around, while it will take almost an hour to count on a highway range of 218 km.

Still in terms of autonomy, the display is linear in its announcements, but still a bit optimistic. According to theoretical calculations, according to all our highway measurements, it is based on an average consumption of 21.7 kWh/100 km. In reality, this corresponds to a difference in autonomy of up to 10 km. Difference that decreases as the battery charge drops: there is a difference of 7 km at 20%, 3 km at 10% and 2 km at 7%. The SoC/autonomy ratio therefore seems quite reassuring.

Autonomy restored / charging time

How much does charging Volkswagen ID.3 cost?

Volkswagen has the advantage of being part of the consortium of manufacturers that has gathered around the Ionity charging network. With the compact, drivers can benefit from preferential rates via the We Charge identification badge, which gives access to more than 250,000 charging points in Europe. There are three formulas, in particular the We Charge Plus offer for €9.99/month the first year, then €17.49/month thereafter. In this case, the price at the Ionity terminals drops to €0.30/min.

In other words, the 10-80% upgrade costs only €9.90, ie a direct cost of € 5.82/100 km† Quite attractive for a highway ride, especially considering the full price of €0.79/min, which would increase the bill to €26.07 (€15.34/100 km). But this case must be taken into account, since the badge provided by Volkswagen, for example, was not recognized at the Ionity station in Maison-Dieu.

Also, the We Charge badge was not accepted at Fastned terminals. Fortunately, if we had an extra Chargemap badge, they also offer the option to pay directly by credit card. According to the information provided by the terminal, the exercise represents a fee of 41.5 kWh, or € 24.49, or a cost of € 14.41/100 km

For this ride on the A6 in the south/north direction, we had to top up three times for a net amount (excluding operator costs) of € 45.41. That is a total cost of € 10.56/100 km for our last stage (a distance of 430 km). As usual, we do not calculate the cost over 500 km, as it is the price of the last top-up to find the starting SoC that will determine the total cost.

Onboard route planner, ABRP and ChargeMap: ABRP in the lead (little bit)

Final exercise of this Clean Automobile Supertest of the Volkswagen ID.3, the comparison of route planners† Available on the central screen, the navigation of the German electric is particularly pleasant. It takes the trouble to warn that the destination is out of range of the remaining autonomy and shows an ISO distance map of the range.

From our starting point, it selects the A7 and A6 highways that serve as our base to reach the Porte d’Orléans in Paris, the finish line of our journey. With 80% charge available, sufficient to reach the Fastned station at the prescribed speeds, the planner nevertheless prefers the Ionity terminals, necessarily and a Total station. In the end, it provides three stops for 1h17 of charging (6h25 in total with the travel times).

The A Better Route Planner application is equally fond of Ionity terminals, with a stop at the three major stations on the route. However, with a better database with this vehicle, the charging times are quite close to reality, arriving at the stations with 10% charge remaining (except Taponas’s). In short, according to him it takes 4h42 away and 51 minutes to charge for a total of 5h33.

ChargeMap manages to target the Fastned station in Saint-Ambreuil and the Ionity terminal in Maison-Dieu, but leads us through the Total station in the Couline area. Total operations: 47 minutes of charging and 4h20 on the road (5h07 in total). Again, within minutes, the cooldowns are pretty much real. Minus the SoC forecasts upon arrival at the terminals. Proof of this is with the first forecast, where the ChargeMap system predicts a 23% rate upon arrival at the Fastned station.

In reality, we arrived there with a 7% charge remaining. First fill up to 70%: 27 minutes. Enough to earn just enough to make it to the Maison-Dieu area where we got a 12-70% in 25 minutes. Finally, last charge at an Ionity terminal near Nemours with 11 minutes of immobilization.

Ultimately, our strategy, modeled after the Renault Megane e-Tech scrutinized a few days earlier, resulted in a journey of 4h22 and 1h03 charging for 500 km† Adding the time of the evolutions on the areas, our journey represents 5h37. In the case of the Volkswagen ID.3, A Better Route Planner seems closest to reality. ChargeMap isn’t far behind, but the slightly over-optimistic initial estimate has turned charge times on its head. Otherwise, the ratio of SoC consumed / km traveled is closest to what we observed in reality. Certainly, this method of calculation is not very rigorous, but it is the one that speaks most to neophytes.

What is the Supertest?

Lovers of numbers and allergic to official technical sheets, the Supertest, new test format d’Automobile-Propre, was created for you, bringing together data collected during a test in real conditions and according to a transparent and precise protocol. Next Wednesday we will publish a new summary article which allows the noted values ​​of the tested models to be compared, yielding all the value of the section.

If you want to go further, don’t hesitate to check out our trials and interacting with the community on our discussion forum