2018 Volkswagen Atlas Calls Itself Family SUV, Has Room For Seven, VR6 Power

What the industry needed was indeed another fridge-shaped SUV

The Santa Monica Pier was where Volkswagen took the wraps off the much-anticipated and teased Atlas SUV, developed on the MQB platform and destined exclusively for the American market.

Despite sharing its underpinnings with the Golf (both sit on VW's MQB modular architecture), Atlas quickly claimes the status of Volkswagen's largest model to date.


"This is the biggest and boldest Volkswagen we have ever built in the United States, delivering the distinctive design and craftsmanship we’re known for, now with room for seven. The Atlas marks a brand new journey for Volkswagen to enter into the heart of the American market."

Measuring 198.3 inches (length), 77.9 inches (width), and 69.6 inches (height), the Atlas offers seating conditions for seven passengers (all adults, if we are to believe VW's press puff which drips emotion and care) and the unsurprisingly semi-sterile VW design language.

Up front, the pot is sweetened via standard LED headlights and DRL, while the LED taillights come as optional offerings.

VW's Digital Cockpit opens the technological baggage for the Atlas, continued with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and MirrorLink compatibility plus an optional Fender 12-speaker audio setup.

Drivetrain and safety

As VW previously announced, Atlas' beating heart can either be a 2.0-liter turbocharged and direct-injected TSI four-cyl (238 hp) or the more powerful 3.6-liter VR6 engine (280 hp).

Guiding the power towards the asphalt falls on the shoulders of an eight-speed automatic gearbox. Additionally, the Atlas can be configured in both FWD and AWD pretense - the latter relies on VW's 4Motion all-wheel drive system with Driving Mode Selection.

There's also a prolix list of safety features available for the VW Atlas SUV, with adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, blind spot monitor, and parking steering assist among the nominees.

Parting the production line with the Passat and at VW's Chattanooga plant in Tennesee, the new Atlas SUV will be available with five trim levels and a price tag "for the heart of the competitive SUV market," although specific details and numbers are yet to be provided.

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