FRANKFURT -- Volkswagen will begin European deliveries of the ID3 in September, but the Golf-sized battery-powered hatchback will initially be sold without two key functions.
The App Connect function that gives access to online features will not be available, meaning drivers will have to do without functions such as Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and the use of the Volkswagen We digital store.
The first ID3s also will not have available at launch an augmented reality feature of its head-up display.
Customers will have to return to their dealer for their free software updates early next year, VW said in a news release on Wednesday.
Binding orders for the 30,000 models making up the limited First Edition ID3 can be placed starting June 17 in most European countries, VW said.
Customers who choose to have their cars delivered in early September will need to get the software update. Meanwhile, ID3 pre-bookers who delay delivery until the fourth quarter will get a version of the car equipped with all functions, VW said.
Prices for the first edition ID3 start below 40,000 euros ($45,484) in Germany, making the car eligible for government incentives. Three different versions of the car will eventually be available, with the top version costing about 50,000 euros. A base version of the ID3 that will cost less than 30,000 euros is also planned.
The ID3 is a key launch for VW because it's the first of a new generation of affordable, long-range electric cars. VW has converted its factory in Zwickau, Germany, to build the ID3 and upcoming compact-sized EVs based on the MEB architecture for sister brands Audi and Seat.
The ID3's September delivery date narrowly meets an end-of-summer deadline VW had set itself to start handing over the car to customers.
Starting deliveries of a new model that lacks key functions is virtually unheard of for VW and reflects the internal pressure the automaker faced to get the car on the streets.
The software issues contributed to a clash that cost CEO Herbert Diess direct control of VW brand, the group's largest division. Ralf Brandstaetter was handed operational oversight of the VW brand on Monday.
The ID3's success is vital for VW to meet stricter emissions rules in Europe and get the industry's largest push into electric vehicles off the ground.
Across its 12 brands, VW Group plans to invest 33 billion euros by 2024 in a push to become the world's largest electric car maker. VW brand alone will invest 11 billion euros as it aims to produce 1.5 million electric cars a year in 2025.
The ID3 is primarily aimed at European customers who like hatchbacks. The U.S. will get the ID4 crossover, which will also be sold in Europe and China. VW said on Wednesday that U.S. deliveries of the ID4 will start around spring of next year.
Bloomberg and Reuters contributed to this report