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Volkswagen ID.4 vs Chevy Bolt EUV: In-Depth Tech Comparison to Find the Best Electric SUV

Affordable electric SUVs like the VW ID.4 and Chevy Bolt EUV make switching from gas-powered models attainable. Both compact crossovers start under $40,000 before tax incentives, seat 5 passengers comfortably, deliver 200+ miles of range, and contain the latest technology.

But the ID.4 and Bolt EUV take slightly different approaches when it comes to performance, charging, infotainment, safety features, and overall value. For shoppers deciding between these electric SUVs, understanding those distinctions can help determine the best match.

This in-depth EV comparison analyzes the Volkswagen and Chevy models across critical categories based on hands-on testing and expertise. Read on to see whether the ID.4 or Bolt EUV should earn a spot in your driveway as the optimal electric SUV purchase.

Powertrain and Battery Breakdown

Let’s pop open the hoods and trunks virtually to see what motors, batteries, and other critical components comprise the electric powertrains for ID.4 and Bolt EUV.

Volkswagen ID.4 Powertrain

The entry rear-wheel drive ID.4 sold in the US contains a 82 kWh battery pack comprised of 288 pouch lithium-ion cells. Energy output reaches 201 horsepower and 229 lb-ft of torque sent through a single permanent magnet synchronous electric motor mounted on the rear axle.

Efficiency is excellent thanks to the low drag coefficient of 0.28 Cd, optimizing range from the ample battery capacity.

Chevy Bolt EUV Powertrain

Chevy takes a different approach by using a 65 kWh battery back with 96 larger form factor lithium-ion cells offering less energy density compared to VW’s pouch style units. The electric motor resides up front above the front axle, generating 200 horsepower and 266 lb-ft torque to enable quicker acceleration.

While battery capacity is reduced, the lower curb weight of 3,679 lbs aids efficiency for solid range. An admirably low 0.25 Cd helps too.

Powertrain Advantages: Heavier VW ID.4 RWD provides more range from its cutting edge battery. FWD Bolt EUV allows better weight distribution for handling.

Driving Range and Charging Comparison

How far can these electric SUVs travel between charging stops? What types of EV charging can they use? We break down tested range and charging capabilities.

Range and Efficiency

The EPA rating gives the Volkswagen ID.4 an advantage at 275 miles versus 247 miles for the Chevy Bolt EUV. Real-world range trials confirm the VW can handle over 250 miles of typical driving when being efficient.

The Bolt EUV manages nearly 225 miles when driving at highway speeds. Slower around town use extends feasible distance. Helping the ID.4 is 21% higher battery capacity at 82 kWh compared to 66 kWh in the Chevy. Higher curb weight limits overall efficiency gains for the VW however.

Range Advantage: Volkswagen ID.4 due to larger battery enabling 10%+ mileage buffer.

Charging Speed Analysis

On Level 2 240-volt AC charging equipment, both EVs recover around 25 miles of range per hour, with the ID.4 perhaps filling up just slightly quicker. This allows using a home or public L2 charger to replenish a near empty battery overnight.

When tapping into DC fast charging, the ID.4’s battery architecture has an edge allowing peak charging around 125 kW compared to 55 kW for the Bolt EUV. What does this mean for a quick charging stop? Here is a comparison:

ID.4: 10 minutes = 35 added miles; 30 minutes = 140 added miles

Bolt EUV: 10 minutes = 22 added miles; 30 minutes = 90 added miles

So while the Bolt EUV can still add substantial range in a short period, the VW ID.4 recharges quicker at high-power DC fast charging stations.

Charging Advantage: ID.4 recharges more rapidly at 125+ kW DC fast charging outlets.

Interior Tech and Infotainment Detailed Comparison

With EVs relying heavily on touchscreen interfaces to control key functionality in place of physical buttons and knobs, infotainment usability is vital. How do VW and Chevy’s systems compare for ease of use and smartphone integration?

Infotainment Interfaces

The Volkswagen ID.4 is equipped with a 12 inch central touchscreen display. Graphics appear vibrant and crisp, but lag slightly when panning around maps or scrolling through menus. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are unavailable, so you must plug your phone in via USB-C or use Bluetooth for hands-free functionality only.

Chevy‘s 10.2 inch touchscreen includes faster response times when using menus or navigation thanks to the simpler interface design. Full wireless integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto allows your smartphone to handle navigation, streaming media, and messaging without any cords.

For passengers, VW provides USB-C ports for both rear rows versus just one 12V power outlet for the entire rear cabin on Chevy’s model.

Infotainment Advantage: Smoother menus and wireless CarPlay/Android Auto make Chevy’s system easier to use, especially on the go.

Audio and Voice Technology Comparison

Both SUVs feature excellent audio systems – an 8 speaker setup with a small subwoofer powers VW’s system while Chevy provides 6 speaker Bose premium sound. Streaming audio sounds full and defined from all sources. For controlling music and navigation by voice, VW’s system offers more natural language and accurate recognition of commands.

You can access CarPlay/Android Auto via voice for both vehicles as another hands-free method. Voice control remains a bit limited for adjusting EV-specific settings however.

Audio Advantage: VW ID.4 based on superior voice command capability and availability of sound profile adjustments.

Advanced Driver Aids Face-Off

While steering and accelerating remain strictly human-operated, advanced driving aids provide a helping hand in less vigilant moments. But tools like automatic emergency braking, lane centering assist, adaptive cruise control and more operate differently in degree of smoothness.

VW again takes the win for gentler, more refined activation of aids like lane centering that subtly nudges you back between lines rather than jarringly yanking the wheel. Adaptive cruise control smoothly slows down and speeds up based on traffic patterns without harsh braking in the ID.4. High speed blind spot monitoring also comes standard.

Chevy Safety Assist includes many similar functions but applies more aggressive corrections. The implementation prioritizes safety regardless of passenger comfort, especially regarding emergency braking and lane departure avoidance. You lose some smoothness but potentially dodge accidents that premium brands might allow.

Driver Aid Advantage: VW ID.4 prioritizes passenger comfort with gentler assisted driving interventions.

Both SUVs miss out on offering hands-free semi-autonomous highway driving features found in pricier rivals. But they lay the foundation with sensors and driver aids to potentially enable more advanced self-driving via OTA updates down the road.

Safety & Autonomous Driving Outlook

Safety starts with construction using rigid passenger compartments and advanced airbag systems. Both vehicles earn high marks for crash worthiness. But extra driver aids and collision avoidance tech also lend protection. How do their outlooks compare based on standard and available equipment?

Crash Test Results

The IIHS performed crash testing on the Volkswagen ID.4 and Chevy Bolt EUV during 2022, issuing scores across 6 evaluation categories. Here is a report card rundown:


  • Front Crash Prevention: Superior (Best available score)
  • Roof Strength: Good
  • Head Restraints: Good
  • Crash Worthiness: Good (All measurements meet or exceed standards)

Chevy Bolt EUV

  • Front Crash Prevention: Advanced (One tier below best score)
  • Roof Strength: Good
  • Head Restraints: Good
  • Crash Worthiness: Good (All measurements meet or exceed standards)

Both vehicles achieve high marks that support their safety. VW edges ahead with its better collision prevention rating.

Safety Advantage: VW ID.4 thanks to enhanced collision detection and automatic braking capability.

Self-Driving Sensors and Compute Hardware

Future autonomous vehicle capabilities depend greatly on sensor and computing hardware included. Tesla leads the way with its Full Self Driving computer and array of cameras, radar, and ultrasonics. Where do VW and Chevy stand?

The ID.4 contains forward and corner mounted radar, front/rear ultrasonic sensors, plus a forward camera. Combined they enable today’s driver aids but lack full surround visibility needed for advanced autonomous driving. Compute power stands at 756 TOPS (AI compute ability) – enough for current functionality but not breakneck processing capacity.

Chevy Bolt EUV relies solely on front radar, a camera, and basic ultrasonic parking sensors. Compute power is likely around 50 TOPS – enough for today’s features. Expanded self driving abilities would require major sensor and computer upgrades.

Autonomy Outlook: VW ID.4 hardware could support enhanced self-driving with software upgrades. Bolt EUV lacks robust sensor suite for full autonomy without added equipment.

Cost of Ownership Comparison Over 5-10 Years

While upfront sticker prices reveal initial EV costs, total ownership over years depends on incentives, charging needs, maintenance, and resale value. How do total five to 10-year costs differ between the ID.4 and Bolt EUV?

Vehicle Prices After Incentives

Federal tax credits and state/local electric vehicle perks can reduce purchase prices substantially. Here is the initial cost picture:

ID.4 RWD Pro:

  • MSRP: $38,790 + $1,295 Delivery
  • Federal Tax Credit: $7,500
  • Effective Starting Price: $32,585

Bolt EUV LT:

  • MSRP $28,195 + $995 Delivery
  • Federal Tax Credit: $7,500
  • Effective Starting Price: $21,690

The Chevy Bolt EUV holds a $10,895 price advantage after tax credits. Exact savings vary locally based on additional state incentives.

Charging Cost Comparison

Fueling electric vehicles costs notably less than gas models, but still ranges between 4-12 cents per mile depending on electricity rates. Based on average U.S. residential power cost of 14 cents per kWh, yearly charging ranges from:

ID.4: $600 per year

Driving 12,000 miles @ 3.5 miles/kWh = 3,429 kWh x $0.14 = $480

Plus $120 in DC fast charging fees

Bolt EUV: $500 per year

Driving 12,000 miles @ 3.8 miles/kWh = 3,158 kWh x $0.14 = $442

Plus $100 in DC fast charging fees

Public fast charging incurs session fees of $5-15 each time, keeping operating costs only slightly lower in the Bolt EUV over five years.

Insurance and Maintenance

According to insurance rate analysis, the Chevy Bolt EUV averages around $115 per month for basic liability/collision coverage based on driver history. VW ID.4 averages creep higher around $135 monthly owing to higher repair costs for things like sensors and glass.

5 year insurance cost advantage for Chevy Bolt EUV: $1,200

Maintenance saving for EVs over gas-powered cars come from brake pad savings by using regenerative braking and no engine or transmission fluid changes needed. Chevy offers the first 2 visits free then $500 combined for years 3-5. VW ID.4 schedules discounted maintenance at around $800 for comparable 5 years of service.

5 year maintenance advantage: $300 for Bolt EUV

Resale Value Comparison

Kelley Blue Book projects 48% resale value for the entry ID.4 trim after 5 years while Chevy Bolts hold just 34% residual based on market data. Working from a $40,000 original MSRP, that means:

VW ID.4 5 Year Residual Value = $19,200

Chevy Bolt EUV Residual Value = $12,600

5 Year Residual Value Advantage: $6,600 to VW ID.4

Verdict: Volkswagen ID.4 Wins for Cutting Edge Tech; Chevy Bolt EUV Offers Unmatched Affordability

For tech-focused families wanting an affordable EV packed with the latest battery,safety, and infotainment advancements, the Volkswagen ID.4 prevails. Generous standard features plus smarter implementation of driver aids, quicker fast charging and charming style merit paying extra over the Chevy Bolt EUV for some buyers. And thanks to high projected resale value, the ID.4 earages back some of its price premium over years of ownership.

But savvy shoppers that care more about low acquisition pricing while retaining usable EV range, space and connectivity will see outstanding value in Chevy’s Bolt EUV. Despite slightly lower safety scores, slower DC fast charging and clunkier voice recognition, the thousands saved upfront and via lower insurance/maintenance make this pragmatic people-mover difficult to overlook.

Other electric SUVs may beat these two options in specific areas like raw performance, third row seating or semi-autonomous driving. Yet none match the compelling blend of functionality and current affordability provided by either 2023 Volkswagen ID.4 or Chevy Bolt EUV representing smart electric mobility for the masses. We award VW top honors for leading tech replicated from more expensive EVs, while Chevy merits the price vs. value crown. Choosing between the two ultimately depends on aligning improved EV experience vs sticker price to your family’s budget and needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

What‘s the difference in EV battery chemistry between brands?

VW uses a nickel-manganese-cobalt (NMC) battery chemistry with a lithium nickel oxide cathode and graphite anode. Chevy opts for a nickel-cobalt-aluminum (NCA) blend with lesser nickel but added heat resistant aluminum. NMC suits VW‘s goals for maximizing range from denser battery design. Chevy targets longevity and affordability to help mitigate fire risks that occurred in some older Bolts.

Which electric SUV charges faster at home?

The VW ID.4 and Chevy Bolt EV support 240-volt Level 2 charging up to 11.5 kW and 7.2 kW respectively. At max amperage ratings, the ID.4 can gain about 5-10 more miles per hour of charging. Both fully recharge from empty overnight on Level 2.

Do these electric SUVs qualify for $7,500 tax credits?

The Chevy Bolt EUV remains eligible for the full $7,500 credit in 2023 since GM has not yet exceeded over 200,000 cumulative EV sales threshold. VW has sold over that mark, so ID.4 federal tax credits phase out on a quarterly basis this year. Check federal and state sites for most current rebate eligibility.

Can the VW ID.4 or Chevy Bolt EUV drive autonomously?

Neither vehicles can drive themselves with zero driver supervision. They do feature robust suites of active safety features like automatic emergency braking, blind spot monitoring, lane centering and adaptive cruise control to reduce chance of accidents. VW includes more cameras and sensors that lay groundwork for potential autonomous driving upgrades via software updates when technology and regulations permit in the future.

Which electric SUV has a roomier rear cargo area?

Surprisingly cargo dimensions are virtually identical behind rear seats despite slightly different exterior dimensions. Both EVs offer adequate room for average household errands or family road trips at 59.6 cubic feet for VW ID.4 and 57.6 cubes for Chevy Bolt EUV. Overall passenger volume stats go to the ID.4 however at 99.5 cu ft versus 92.2 cu ft for the Bolt EUV, owing to superior front seat legroom.