When Jason Fenske from Engineering Explained got his hands on the new Volkswagen ID.4, he wanted to make a video about how you can now travel cross country in something other than a Tesla. But, he didn’t because of some issues he ran into.
As he states, many of the things he didn’t like could and probably will be resolved with future updates. But until then, he prefers his Tesla Model 3 for road trips.
The issues started at his first visit to an Electrify America charging station. His charger got stuck in the port and he had a hard time unlocking it. The second time around, he picked the wrong charger and had to restart. But those two experiences are beside the point.
When charging a Tesla at a Tesla station or Mach-E at an Electrify America station, it’s basically plug and play. That’s not the case with the ID.4 (see above). Also, the navigation tool that helps guide you to charging stations during a road trip is pretty terrible. Not only does it exclude Electrify America stations, but the system also navigates you to slow chargers that would take 10 hours for a full charge (see below).
He states at the end of the video that this won’t affect owners who charge at home and don’t plan to take road trips. He likes a lot about the ID.4 (see below), including its charging speed, but says it lags behind other EVs for now.
Jason makes some good points. People who are new to EVs aren’t going to like the extra steps at the charging station and Volkwagen needs to do something about the navigation system. You shouldn’t have to use third-party apps to find charging stations anymore. If big automakers are going to convince Americans to go electric, they need to make it easy for owners.