Hop in! Digital Key and I.D. pave the way ahead. As soon as you approach the car, the white lines of light in the surface of the door handles light up. If the person's hand comes up close to the handle, the line of light pulsates and the handle extends from the body and the door can be opened as normal.
New design criteria for a life on the move. Passengers on board the I.D. are in a mobile space that has been completely rethought, laid out anew, and redesigned. Volkswagen calls it the Open Space – a pure, airy, space. The sculpted, flowing structures of the surfaces are inspired by nature – bionic design instead of cold engineering. The design, with its organically shaped surfaces and gentle radii, emphasise the impression of space. Another defining design trait is that the interior is enclosed by a geometric structure – a Möbius strip – which owes its name to the German mathematician and astronomer August Ferdinand Möbius, who first described this twisted shape – where the inner surface becomes the outer surface and vice versa – in the middle of the 19th century. The representations of the Möbius strip by M. C. Escher are world famous. Volkswagen's designers are the first to have transferred this legendary geometric figure into a car in the I.D. Furthermore, the simplicity – a reduction in complexity thanks to the replacement of switches and control stalks by new digital, precisely finished solutions – results in a new, intuitive, operating environment.
Sit where you like. There are four separate integral seats, with the headrests and seatbelts harmonically integrated into the backrest. The structural design of the seats appears very light. Flowing, restrained light grey satin fabric ("Jacquard Heather") and a reduced seam underline the floating impression of the seats. The seats in the back can be folded up like cinema seats to save space, for instance to quickly make room for large items of luggage such as folding bicycles or picture frames. The "dive down" function also allows the rear seats to be lowered to floor level, turning the boot and rear seat area into a single large, flat cargo area.
Depending on the seating configuration the I.D. has up to 960 l of boot space. Between the left and right seats there is a utility box in the front and a folding centre armrest in the back. The utility box also serves as a centre armrest and a rail system with integrated accessories adds extra functionality to the utility box. Both the utility box as well as the rear centre armrest can be slid forwards and backwards or be removed. A box for shopping can also be fitted in the front-seat passenger area. The Open Space is flooded with daylight through large windows and a panoramic roof. If the sunshine is too bright, the transparent roof can also be darkened electronically.
Display and control elements. The electric motor in the rear, the battery in the chassis and digitisation of the display and control elements permit an entirely new interior layout for driver and passengers. The driver's space blends in with the rest of the interior; the mobile space in the I.D. has been transformed into a multi-variable lounge, and yet every driver will intuitively get to grips with it straight away as the I.D. is controlled with self-explanatory touch displays in the doors, capacitive keypads, and voice and gesture control. The centre of this car of the modern age consists of an electrically adjustable and retractable multifunction steering wheel, a new Active Info Display, an electronic interior mirror (e-Mirror), an AR-Head-up Display (where AR stands for augmented reality) that is also new and newly designed door panels on all four doors. A central infotainment system in the middle of the dashboard is a thing of the past. Now the menus that were located there up to now are also available to the rear-seat passengers, thanks to the four individual door panels.
Multifunction steering wheel. In the middle of the steering wheel you'll find the Volkswagen logo, as usual, except that in this case it is an illuminated button with which the driver can switch from manual to fully automated ("I.D. Pilot") mode. By pressing the Volkswagen logo for three seconds the electrically adjustable and retractable steering wheel retracts and interlocks with the dashpad. When the steering wheel reverts from fully automated to manual mode, an illuminated display appears in the rim of the steering wheel for a few seconds to indicate that it is changing mode. Aesthetics and functionality make the I.D.'s electrically adjustable and retractable multifunction steering wheel a highlight, both visually and haptically. The full circle has given way to a steering wheel with six rounded corners, creating a control island in the lower part of the primarily transparent and backlit high-tech steering wheel to reduce the complexity of operation. From here the driver controls the car's main functions – such as the drive positions "P", "R", "N" and "D" as well as indicating – using illuminated capacitive keypads. Four more capacitive keys adapt to the various functions such as taking a phone call and two capacitive sliders allow the driver to scroll intuitively through the lists like the playlist and adjust the volume of the sound system.
AR-Head-Up Display. In the I.D. Volkswagen presents a new stage of evolution of the head-up display, with the prefix AR – which stands for Augmented Reality. Information such as the directions given by the satellite navigation system are, for the first time, projected as virtual images that appear to be between 7 and 15 metres ahead of the car. The effect is amazingly realistic: arrows are projected via augmented reality to show where the driver and the I.D. are heading. Thanks to the AR-Head-Up Display, the navigation instructions – which were originally banished to a display on the instrument panel – are part of driver's three-dimensional surroundings.
Active Info Display. A 10.0-inch Active Info Display displays information to the driver and can also be used to view content like the media library and menus such as the satellite navigation, or to control the multifunction steering wheel. The Active Info Display gives the driver great freedom. For instance, the full 10 inches of the screen can be turned into a 3D navigation screen. The display uses three transparent layers to display the various types of information. At the bottom, on the first layer there is the navigation map; the digital content retrieved using the Volkswagen ID is displayed on the second layer; and the third layer, at the top, is used to display driving data such as the car's speed and range.
e-Mirror. Conventional rear-view mirrors are a thing of the past in the I.D. But habit is difficult to change, so in place of the rear-view mirrors there is now a system that looks exactly the same and performs the same function, too: the e-Mirror. This combines data from three external cameras on a monitor. The images are transmitted from the wing mirror cameras on the left and right-hand sides of the car as well as a rearward facing camera. Doing away with the wing mirrors improves the aerodynamics of the vehicle. The only button in the I.D., for the hazard warning lights, is to be found in the base of the mirror.
Door panels. Information and controls that have previously only been available to the driver and the front-seat passenger are now available to the rear-seat passengers too – thanks to the new door panels. These white, partially transparent control islands are ergonomically mounted in the trim of the four doors, where they appear to be suspended in mid-air. It is evident from the shape of the panels that they also act as the interior door handles and house loudspeakers. The door panels can be used to control the air conditioning functions, the infotainment and navigation functions, the light, the electric windows and the central locking. The door panel can even be used to receive phone calls. These functions are all controlled on a white touchscreen with black icons as well as a capacitive slider on the side, which is used to regulate the temperature and the air blowers. The information displayed on the door panel changes as soon as the door is opened or the driver switches to the fully automated "I.D. Pilot" mode, the driver can also restrict the range of functions of the other door panels, for example if there are children sitting in the back.
Starting and stopping. As soon as there is someone in the driver's seat the steering wheel, which is retracted into the dashpad in parking mode, comes out and the multifunction displays light up simultaneously. At the same time, the I.D. triggers the Active Info Display and the AR Head-up Display. Ambient lighting and the Active Info Display greet the driver with a welcome routine. Just close the doors, belt up, press the brake, select a driving mode and the I.D. is ready for off. The Start/Stop button is a thing of the past. The driving modes "D" and "R" are activated by gently pressing the corresponding button on the multifunction steering wheel, and the I.D. is switched off by pressing the "P" on the steering wheel, which causes the steering wheel to be retracted flush with the dashpad again.