Volkswagen first showed the Atlas Cross Sport at the 2018 New York Auto Show. Then it was just a concept, but this is the actual production model. Yes, it shares much of its identity with the Atlas, from its exterior and interior designs to its platform and powertrain. For this model, however, VW aimed to seize on a space between the smaller Tiguan and the larger, three-row Atlas SUV. In a world where crossovers are king, the company sunk $340 million into casting a wider net for potential customers who want the space, but don’t need three-row seating.
While the car looks similar to the full-size Atlas, the Atlas Cross Sport has a sharper face, more coupe-like styling and a bit of a sportier look to offset the larger SUV’s practical, people-hauling approach.
The five-seater 2020 Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport is slightly smaller than the standard Atlas. It’s 2.8 inches shorter and 7.3 inches lower than its larger sibling. However, it shares the same 78.3-inch width and 117.3-inch wheelbase. Since VW deleted the third row in this model, the second-row passengers get slightly more legroom, and cargo space with the seats in place goes up to 40.3 cubic feet. With the seats folded, the Atlas Cross Sport has 77.8 cubic feet of cargo space — down from the standard Atlas’ 96.8 cubic feet, owing to its shorter length and height.
You’d expect the 2020 Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport to share its technology with the standard Atlas, and you’d be right. You still get Volkswagen’s Digital Cockpit, a suite of driver assistance features and available 4Motion all-wheel drive with multiple drive modes. Other highlights include wireless charging, heated rear seats, heated and ventilated front seats, and a 12-speaker Fender premium audio system.
The 2020 Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport comes in no less than eight trim levels, from the base S all the way up to the SEL Premium R-Line. Two new driver assist features debut on VW’s latest model, namely Traffic Jam Assist and Dynamic Road Sign Display. Traffic Jam Assist brings the car to a stop from speeds up to 37 mph. After three seconds at a full stop, it will either start off again on its own (assuming traffic is moving), or the driver can start it again by pressing the gas pedal or a “Resume” button on the steering wheel.
The 2020 Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport does share its powertrains with the standard model. That means either a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder or a 3.6-liter narrow-angle VR6 engine, depending on which model you buy. The smaller four-pot puts out 235 horsepower, while the larger engine makes 276 horsepower. Both pair up to an eight-speed automatic transmission, while the V6-powered Atlas Cross Sport can tow up to 5,000 pounds when properly equipped.
Volkswagen has not announced pricing yet. We should know more in Spring 2020, when the model is set to launch in the U.S. market. As with the standard Atlas, Volkswagen will build the Atlas Cross Sport at its Chattanooga, Tennessee assembly plant.
Stay tuned to TFLcar.com for more updates!