Photos: Volkswagen

The Volkswagen ID.3 electric hatchback, formerly known just as the ID, is now open to early booking deposits in Europe with production planned for the end of this year and deliveries to start mid-2020. Perhaps the most interesting bit of news, though, is that VW expects the medium-range model to be the most popular.

European markets can now book their production slot for the upcoming ID.3, named so to designate its compact market segment and to distinguish it a bit from the confusing lineup of ID concept cars, for a fee of £750 in the UK, or roughly $978, and 1,000 Euros in the rest of the European market, or about $1,125. The rest of VW’s upcoming electric lineup will follow this naming scheme.

(Clarification, May 10 11 a.m.: this article previously didn’t include the deposit difference for the UK and European markets).

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The ID.3 lineup is broken down into three different battery sizes, offering an estimated WLTP range of 330, 420, or 550 kilometers, which shakes out to an approximate 205, 260, or 342 miles of range, though the actual EPA estimates which have yet to be announced may be lower. VW anticipates the medium-range model will be its best-seller.

The announcement claims pricing for the lowest-range model will start at “under” 30,000 Euros, or under $33,595. The only other price announced was “under” 40,000 Euros, or roughly $44,790, for a UK special edition.

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The UK market’s pre-order special “1st Edition” model comes with the medium-range battery pack, larger wheels, “comprehensive equipment” including navigation, and two-tone treatment on the interior and exterior, and is limited to 30,000 orders.

While the prices seem pretty steep, the lower-range model is at less than the average transaction price of a new car in the U.S. (though that factors in more than just compact cars), and many people realistically don’t need more than 200 miles of range in their daily commutes. VW probably expects the medium-range model to sell better as a bit of a consumer compromise though, for those occasional longer journeys.

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Motor output and charge times still have yet to be officially confirmed, and all we really know so far is that the 2016 concept car promised 125 kW, or roughly 167 horsepower. We’ll see if that’s still accurate, and whether the bigger-battery models may get more than one motor, when the car is fully revealed.

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Pre-orders for the car in the rest of the world’s markets is expected to open up after the official production car reveal in September, and VW is banking on moving over 100,000 of these once deliveries gets going.

VW puts the car at the same level of importance as the Beetle and Golf before it, but we’ll just have to see if the world is ready to buy up a bunch of an electric people’s car. They just might if this paint job that looks like the best-tasting Pop-Tart is an option.

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