This past March Volkswagen presented a concept previewing a new addition to the brand’s SUV lineup. Some nine months later, images of the production version have surfaced online after first being posted on a Chinese website.
This has set off a deluge of new information coming out regarding the new model.
When the concept was unveiled it was dubbed the Atlas Cross Sport, which gave a pretty indication of the SUV’s basis underpinnings. Simply put, we knew it was going to be a sportier version of the Atlas, particularly in terms of its styling. This recipe has worked very well for BMW with its X5 and sportier X6 SUVs, to the point where several manufacturers are cooking up their own versions.
Volkswagen is just the latest to do so.
The images first appeared on Chinese website Autohome. From them we can tell that, for starters, the Cross Sport version will not have a third row of seats, a compromise that allowed for a more-sloping coupe-like look in back.
As often happens in the transition from concept to production vehicle, the lines of the vehicle have been streamlined to the disappointment of many VW lovers. Under the hood, we expect to find the same basic mechanics that power the Atlas – which means a base 4-cylinder engine delivering 238 hp, plus the Volkswagen Group’s 3.6L V6 (280 hp) as an option. Rumours speak of a hybrid variant a little further down the road.
That remains mere speculation as this point.
Production for the newest Volkswagen model is expected to start sometime in 2019 at the company’s American plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The Atlas Sport Cross will be tasked with taking on the likes of the Ford Edge, the Nissan Murano and the upcoming Blazer from Chevrolet.
By this schedule, we should be seeing the first Atlass Cross Sport models at dealerships within a year.