Volkswagen had promised a complete rethink of its strategy in the United States, and it seems to be rearing its head slowly but surely.
The company has just announced that the VW Atlas at the Los Angeles motor show. This large seven-seat crossover comes at a time when the SUV sales in North America is booming due to low gas prices. Offering three rows of seats, the 2018 VW Atlas marks the entry of the German into the SUV market in North America. Up until now, the company has largely focused on sedans with models like the Passat and Jetta.
The 2018 VW Atlas uses the latest MQB architecture from the company. It is easily the largest Volkswagen model available for sale in the United States. To start with, the vehicle will be available with two powertrain options. The base 2.0-liter turbocharged engine with four cylinders manages to output 238 bhp. It is powered with an eight speed automatic transmission. There is also the 3.6-liter motor with six cylinders and the same eight speed gearbox. This engine manages to develop 280 bhp. While the model with four cylinders can be had only with front wheel drive, the V6 model can be purchased with either front wheel drive or all-wheel drive.
Opting for the all-wheel drive variant of the 2018 VW Atlas provides users with access to the drivetrain select, which can modify the various parameters of the vehicle based on the road conditions or driver’s wish.
One of the big selling points of the vehicle will not be its powertrain nor the drive select feature, but the spacious three row seating. Volkswagen have designed the vehicle in such a way that the third row of seats can be folded down should there be a necessity for luggage space over passenger carrying capacity.
The driver gets to enjoy much of the recent technological fest featured in Audi models like the virtual cockpit, which makes its debut on the 2018 VW Atlas under the name of Volkswagen digital cockpit. The infotainment system on the vehicle comes with support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. A premium Fender audio system is provided with a 480 W amplifier and 12 speakers. Some of the numerous safety features on the 2018 VW Atlas are forward collision warning, automatic post collision braking system, Lane departure warning, blindspot monitor, and autonomous emergency braking.
Pricing of the vehicle has not yet been announced.