New Volkswagen ID 7 vs Tesla Model 3: costs

As Volkswagen's new electric flagship, the ID 7 has a lot to prove. Let's see whether its talents run deep enough to beat the class-leading and recently refreshed Tesla Model 3...

Volkswagen ID 7 charging port

Buying and owning

Costs, equipment, reliability, safety and security

You’d probably expect to pay more for a limo-sized Volkswagen than a BMW 3 Series-sized Tesla, and that is indeed the case if you were to purchase the cars outright, with the Volkswagen ID 7 commanding a £1560 premium. But despite being less efficient than the Model 3, the ID 7 will be slightly cheaper for private buyers to run over three years, mainly because it’s predicted to shed value at a slower rate.

That said, most buyers will go down the PCP finance route, and here the ID 7 looks even more attractive. At the time of writing, Volkswagen was offering a £2000 deposit contribution and a low borrowing rate of 3.9% APR. You’ll therefore pay a reasonable £586 per month for the ID 7 and a punchier £758 for the Model 3, assuming you’ve put down a £5000 deposit with a 10,000-mile annual limit over four years.

Tesla Model 3 charging cable in boot

While the ID 7 comes well equipped, featuring Matrix LED headlights, keyless entry and a heated steering wheel, you still have to pay extra for a number of items that are standard on the Model 3. These include heated front and outer rear seats and ventilated front seats (all part of the £2000 Interior Pack on the ID 7), plus the panoramic roof and heat pump we mentioned earlier.

Both cars will be highly tempting for company car drivers, and there’s hardly anything between them in terms of benefit-in-kind salary sacrifices: between now and April 2025, a 40% taxpayer will have to pay just £1132 to run the Model 3 and £1167 for the ID 7.

With a peak charging rate of 250kW, the Model 3 can be topped up from 10-80% in as little as 27 minutes, while the ID 7 (which can handle up to 175kW) takes a minute or two longer. Remember, though, that the Model 3 gives you full access to Tesla’s dedicated Supercharger network, which offers quicker, more reliable and cheaper charging than most other public networks. A full charge at home will take about 12 hours with the Model 3 and 15 minutes longer with the ID 7.

New Volkswagen ID 7 vs Tesla Model 3 costs

The ID 7 is too new to have featured in the most recent What Car? Reliability Survey, but the pre-facelift Model 3 ranked ninth out of 20 models in the electric car category. In the overall brand league table, Tesla came 10th out of 32, well above Volkswagen (22nd).

Both cars were awarded a five-star safety rating, but it’s hard to compare the results, because the Model 3 was tested under a less stringent procedure when it first arrived in Europe back in 2019.

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