It's been a minute since we heard anything regarding the hopped-up version of the Volkswagen ID.3. That changes right now in dramatic fashion, as we received a fresh set of spy photos showing the sporty hatch in public for the first time.
In typical Volkswagen style, a quick glance at this black prototype would leave you underwhelmed. It looks like a normal ID.3, which received an update earlier this year. But look closely at the side and you'll see a new rocker panel with protrusions front and rear. It gives the hatchback a lower stance, and that's likely aided by a slightly lowered suspension. Meanwhile at the front, we have proof that this is an ID.3 GTX test vehicle. A new fascia prominently features the same mesh pattern used on GTX versions of the ID.4 and ID.5.
Gallery: Volkswagen ID.3 GTX Spy Photos
This isn't a camo-free ID.3 GTX, however. Also in typical VW style, there are some clever stickers hiding details. Corner vents on the front fascia are obscured, and the rear fascia has grey wrap hiding designs in a central cutout. We'd bet a gazillion dollars there's more mesh under there, but for now, it's something on which we can only speculate.
Speculation extends to the powertrain as well. Previously, we reported that the ID.3 GTX would be all-wheel drive with a dual-motor layout, and we believe that's still the case. In standard guise, the ID.3 features a single electric motor mounted at the back, developing 201 bhp. On the GTX, we're expecting a front motor to join the party with a combined output of around 300 bhp. If this sounds familiar, it should – it's the layout you'll find in the aforementioned ID.4 and ID.5 GTX. And if VW uses this formula, the larger 77-kWh battery with a WLTP range of around 310 miles is likely.
We can't help but notice the timing of this public sighting comes just after the debut of the ID. GTI concept. Making waves this week at IAA Mobility, it previews the electric future for VW's iconic hot hatch. A production version won't debut until 2026, but whereas the ID.3 GTX should have AWD, the GTI is expected to utilise a front-motor, front-wheel drive layout. That creates two distinct electric hot hatchbacks for VW's lineup, with the ID.3 GTX coming first. We expect a debut sometime in 2024.