Volkswagen ID.7 makes CES debut with a digital camo


The saying “cars these days are nothing more than moving computers” is no longer a cynical statement but is becoming a reality, as the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas has also become a stage to showcase new electric vehicles/concepts. Volkswagen is showcasing the next member of the ID. family, the ID.7. It is still in a concept/prototype form, but as you can probably tell, it is wearing an interesting camouflage with a QR code-like pattern.

Speaking of which, the “digital camouflage” as VW likes to call it, is comprised of 40 layers of paint, of which some are conductive (for electroluminescence) while others have insulating properties. A total of 22 sections of the vehicle can be controlled separately so that they light up. Now, imagine if all this is connected to a music system, the lights can, of course, dance to the rhythm.

As for the vehicle itself, it is a further evolved version of the ID. Aero concept we saw last June. If you’re familiar with the ID. models that are already on sale, it’s not all that hard to imagine the ID.7 sans camouflage. Volkswagen has reserved the full details for another date but isn’t afraid to share that the ID.7 has a 2.97 metre (2,970 mm) wheelbase—which should translate into a generous cabin space. Just FYI, that wheelbase is significantly longer than that of the Passat.

On the inside, things are nothing but typical; I mean, typical of a modern EV. The dashboard is dominated by a laptop-sized screen (15-inch)—which apparently controls all the creature comforts of the car. It appears that the flow of the air is also controlled via this touchscreen, which is sadly becoming a trend these days. VW also says that the ID.7 can detect when the driver is approaching (based on their key) and will already start to pre-cool or pre-heat the cabin (depending on the weather). Voice commands will also be available. “Hello Volkswagen, my hands are cold!”, for instance, will activate the steering wheel heating function in addition to warm air being directed towards the hands.

The driver’s side of the dashboard is clear of any obstructions, but there’s a tiny display for all the essential information. There’ll also be an Augmented Reality Head-Up Display.

As mentioned, further details will be available at a later date, but Volkswagen is targeting a WLTP range of up to 700 km (435 mi) for the ID.7. Series production is expected to commence in the second quarter of 2023. Target markers include China, Europe and North America. For the European markets, the ID.7 will be produced at the Volkswagen Emden plant.

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