The 2018 Volkswagen Atlas is a handsome and stylish SUV, from all angles. It is built on the German company’s popular MQB platform and in fact, is the largest vehicle to be modeled on that architecture. The LED light and sleek grille design add to its stylish looks.
There is no denying Volkswagen has been a little too late to join the big crossover SUV party. However, the iconic carmaker is in no mood to be outshined by GM or Toyota in this segment. That explains the much hyped US launch of its first ever big 3 row SUV aka 2018 Volkswagen Atlas.
2018 Volkswagen Atlas – Handsome and Stylish SUV
The backside looks of the 2018 Volkswagen Atlas sleek wraparound tail lamps and dual exhaust pipes. All models get laden with aluminum alloy wheels. The trims are S, SE, SEL and SEL Premium. VW is also offerings special launch edition. The exterior colors are Reflex silver metallic, Platinum Grey Metallic, Yellow metallic, Fortuna Red metallic and deep black pearl etc.
The inside styling of 2018 Volkswagen Atlas is somewhat classy but understated. The cabin is inspired by sibling Passat. There are 3 rows of seats. Compared to most category rivals, the third row is roomy enough and it can be used to accommodate adults- though not for long journeys. Cargo space is enough and with 2nd and 3rd rows folded down, it can gobble up plenty of luggage. There are 17 cup holders along with smart storage solutions to keep several items and gadgets. Standard seating layout follows the 2+3+2 pattern. The 2nd-row seats are enabled with slide and tilt mechanism for better passenger accommodation. Default cargo space is 20.6 cubic feet.
The company loads the 2018 Volkswagen Atlas with all types of amenities and safety features but it is the top trim which gets the most in both segments, as it is natural. All trims get the multifunction steering wheel, metallic trim, cruise control, under floor cargo area storage, electric parking brake etc. The S trim gets a 6.5-inch infotainment screen, LED headlights,
The SE trim adds imitation leather seats, keyless entry, automatic headlights, proximity key, 4 USB ports and heated front seats etc. SEL trim gets three-zone climate control, power panoramic moonroof, trailer hitch while SEL Premium gets leather seats and a Fender premium audio system.
Safety wise, there are several features but S trim misses out on most of these. SE and SEL trim can be laden with Technology group which adds lane departure warning, auto-dimming rearview mirror, and adaptive cruise control. The post-collision braking tech is a nice addition. A rearview camera is there and surrounds view camera is optional. Volkswagen offers a generous 6 years/72000 miles warranty on all trims- which is nice.
Few Engine Variants
The 2018 Volkswagen Atlas comes with a few engine choices. The 3.6 L V6 unit makes 280 horsepower and there is a 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine making 238 HP. Both these engines are laden with 8-speed automatic transmission. The towing capacity is 5000 pounds. the
The engines are also equipped with the company’s 4Motion all-wheel drive. There are driving modes like off-road, snow, Sport, eco etc. The off-road mode activates hill descent control and hill start assist. Ride quality is top notch with brisk acceleration and the firm grip on the road. Keep in mind that activating Sports mode affects the fuel economy adversely. The cabin is silent but entry level trim fares worse. Body roll is almost not there.
Price and Availability of the 2018 Volkswagen Atlas
The base trim pricing of 2018 Volkswagen Atlas begins at $31,000 and top trim price with packages and upgrades can cross past $50,000 limit. It is now available for sale.
Summing it up
There is no denying that VW has come up with an interesting and well designed large SUV crossover in form of the Atlas. The styling is impressive and the cabin is designed with the focus on utility than sheer styling. It can accommodate 7 adults minus fuss and cargo space is also good.
The Atlas also scores high on safety features, except the base trim. Pricing covers a wide range and customization choices are aplenty. The 6-year warranty offered by VW is like icing on the cake.