VW previews 2019 SUV in NY with Atlas Cross Sport concept

VW Atlas Cross Sport concept shows hybrids have an exciting future		
		
	Matt Burns

       @	   
   	8 hours

VW Atlas Cross Sport concept shows hybrids have an exciting future Matt Burns @ 8 hours

It will join the Atlas and Tiguan in 2019, with VW's SUV lineup to be further bolstered in 2020 with the all-electric I.D. Atlas Sport was the wide favorite to be the name of the new VW crossover, so Atlas Cross Sport is pretty close. The Atlas Cross Sport is created to bridge the gap between those two, providing SUV punters reason not to buy a BMW X4, for example.

While in motion, five passengers can fill the Tanoak's interior.

To be produced alongside the seven-seat Atlas SUV at Volkswagen's Chattanooga plant in Tennessee, the Atlas Cross Sport is being positioned as a more affordable alternative to the likes of the BMW X6.

The new truck would be a unibody construction and based on the MQB platform used by the 7-seat version of the Atlas SUV. The result is still an imposing Atlas in the front paired with a short and sporty overhang in the rear. This is a vehicle that should, in theory, be as comfortable and as easy to fit into your life as the Atlas it is based on; it's a truck meant to enable the somewhat amorphous "active lifestyle" that includes outdoor activities - the movable bar over the bed makes it easy to tote paddlecraft, for example - home improvement, etc. Headroom for the second row may be a little tighter - a trade-off for the slanted C-pillars and rakish roofline with panoramic moonroof that stretches into a rear roof spoiler with black fins.

Officially Volkswagen has no plans for the Atlas Tanoak to make production, but they are keen the gauge the reaction of both buyers and the media. The daytime running lights not only extend all the way across the two-bar grille to the illuminated VW badge, but are animated with it. At the rear, the LED taillights are placed above an aluminum trim line that accentuates the SUV's width - as does the aluminum trim piece that unites the tailpipe surrounds.

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Also borrowed from the Atlas is the Tanoak's engine choice.

Volkswagen's Atlas Cross Sport concept. The all-wheel-drive-mode control behind the shifter even has its own display and LED lighting.

The Atlas Tanoak has a 3.6-liter V6 FSI engine, an eight-speed automatic transmission, and VW's 4Motion all-wheel-drive system.

It previews an upcoming five-seat version of the Atlas and comes with a coupe-inspired design, plug-in hybrid tech, as well as a cutting-edge infotainment system with proximity sensors and gesture control. VW estimates that the concept will reach 60 miles per hour in 8.5 seconds.

But the company notes the MQB platform can accommodate a wide variety of powertrains, and that a mild-hybrid powertrain for the Atlas Cross Sport with the same V-6 and electric motors, but a smaller battery, would put out 310 hp and have a 6.5-second sprint to 60 miles per hour.

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