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Volkswagen’s rapid development of its pure-electric range of cars has led to them joking about rebranding as Voltswagen. That might not be quite as terrible an idea as it sounds, as its ID.3 electric hatchback can’t stop winning awards. 

This isn’t the carmaker’s first electric car - the Elektro Transporter started the path to emissions-free motoring back in 1972, although its range of 43 miles and 43mph top speed wouldn’t impress anybody today. 

Fortunately, the new ID.3 can do rather better. It’s built around an entirely new platform, one that’s designed to keep the battery pack hidden away, which allows the car to be built around the needs of the user rather than the powertrain. 

Broadly similar in size to the Golf, it offers interior space that’s from a class above, as the cabin extends to where the engine would be, had one been fitted. It’s a suitably avant-garde and minimalist cabin, with little more than a pair of digital displays ahead of the driver, and a head-up display appearing to float in the distance - this provides the driver with all the information they need, without requiring them to look away from the road. Most facilities can be operated using voice control, too, keeping you focused on driving rather than operating a screen. 

Family clutter can be stored in countless cubby holes, pockets and storage bins, while the boot is ever so slightly larger than you’ll find in a Golf. With the impressively spacious rear seats, it makes the ID.3 near-perfect as a family car. 

Three power options ensure all drivers are catered for, too. Most ID.3s will have a 58kWh battery, which is enough for 263 miles of motoring between charges. Available with either 145 or 204hp, performance from either model is brisk. A 77kWh battery is available that’ll go for 336 miles, with just the 204hp output available. All come with 100kw rapid charging, meaning you can reach an 80% charge in under 40 minutes, even on the most powerful model. 

HeraldScotland:

Every model also comes comprehensively equipped, with even the entry-level ‘Life’ model getting climate control, heated seats and steering wheel, a 10.0-inch infotainment system and adaptive cruise control. Every user will see reduced running costs, with Volkswagen estimating that a typical ID.3 user will save £730 a year in maintenance, fuel and road tax, amongst other expenses, when compared with a similar Golf. Business users will benefit further - the ID.3 attracts a BIK rate of just 1%, giving a company car tax bill as low as £67 for the year. 

A futuristic transparent factory in Dresden is the home of the ID.3, with each model being built in full view of the public. If this is the future, then Volkswagen is already there, with a car that’s both conventional and innovative, bridging the divide between the fossil fuel powered past and the local-emissions free future. 

We can’t promise a transparent office on the scale of VW’s Dresden factory, but you can select which ID.3 model you want to lease from a wide selection at Intelligent Car Leasing.