Volkswagen's electrification efforts will include a new battery-powered GTI model. That upcoming electric hot hatch was previewed in September by the ID. GTI concept – a stylish five-door with the coveted three-letter badge and futuristic features.
The electric GTI has since been confirmed for production, but it's still a few years out, so we don't have all the details. In the meantime, here's what we do know about VW's first electric hot hatchback.
What's Under The Hood?
Volkswagen hasn't fully detailed the EV's powertrain, with even the concept lacking specs. That said, the ID. GTI concept is based on the ID.2all concept, which uses a single electric motor powering the front wheels with an electronic differential lock.
VW described the ID. GTI as having a high-performance powertrain atop VW's MEB Entry platform designed for front-wheel-drive vehicles. The ninth-generation, electric-only Golf arrives in 2028 and will ride on the company's SSP platform.
What Does It Look Like?
The concept VW revealed in September was a stylish five-door hatchback with a sharp face and stylish rear end. The ground effects, lower bumper opening, and aggressive rear diffuser gave it an athletic stance. VW's design boss shared a sketch of the model when he announced that the car would arrive in 2026, looking identical to the concept.
VW has yet to release real photos of the concept's cabin, but concept drawings shown by the brand reveal a slick and nearly production-ready interior. It had a squished steering wheel sitting in front of a slim, landscape-oriented instrument display. On the center of the dash was a larger display for the infotainment system.
The concept also had a floating center console, fun-looking play and pause buttons on the pedals, a single rotary dial on the center console, and a row of buttons on the dash. It also had an augmented reality windshield that displayed the track, position, lap times, and vehicle information like speed – although that's unlikely to make it into the production.
What Will It Be Called?
Volkswagen hasn't been forthcoming about what it'll call its new performance EV when it enters production. When VW confirmed it would launch the electric GTI in 2026, the sketch of the concept included a drawing of the original Golf, so the EV might adopt that name. The company also trademarked a new GTI logo that replaces the "I" with a lightning bolt.
When Does It Debut?
Volkswagen's design boss revealed right before Christmas that the electric GTI would arrive in 2026. He didn't offer a more specific date, so we could be waiting nearly three years for the new EV to break cover. It's also unclear where VW will sell the new EV. It might not make it to the US if it's too small.
How Much Will It Cost?
VW hasn't provided a specific price for its new electric GTI. VW based the performance hatch on the ID.2all concept, which it said would be as affordable as a Polo. Volkswagen doesn't offer that compact model in the US, but it costs 21,590 euros in Germany, which is around $23,500 in the US at today's exchange rate.
The current gas-powered VW Golf GTI starts at $33,190 in the US, including destination, and an electric version might cost more than that. But EV prices are falling, and the electric GTI is still several years away from going on sale.