Volkswagen of America, Inc. unveiled the new 2021 Atlas at the Chicago Auto Show today. The refreshed seven-seater offers a bolder design as well as interior upgrades, advanced technology and new driver-assistance features while still maintaining the spacious interior and user-friendly infotainment and ergonomics that made the outgoing model so popular.
“The Atlas has been a huge success story for Volkswagen of America, helping us to position the brand with a greater emphasis on the family-friendly SUVs that consumers are buying,” said Scott Keogh, president and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America. “This refreshed model brings all the functionality of the previous model, and ups the ante with new technology and more style.”
The refreshed Atlas maintains the same underpinnings of the successful outgoing model, but is nearly three inches longer, thanks to new front and rear bumper designs. Following in the footsteps of the Atlas Cross Sport, a bold three-bar grille extends into the front light signature creating a more stylish presence. The refreshed model features new headlight and taillight designs that include standard LED lighting. This, along with the sculpted front and rear bumpers, gives the Atlas a more aggressive stance. The R-line® trims up the ante with a unique bumper design, side skirts, and available 20- or 21-inch aluminum-alloy wheels (dependent on trim), as well as signature R-line badging.
The interior receives upgrades over the previous model, offering a more connected and comfortable experience. Upgrades include a new steering wheel, available contrast-stitching on the leather seating surfaces and door trim, and an 8-inch Composition Media infotainment system on all models but the base S trim. Available features include the Volkswagen Digital Cockpit, Fender® Premium Audio System, ambient lighting, 3-zone Climatronic® climate control, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, wireless charging, and remote start.
The Atlas highlights new technology features such as the Car-Net® telematics system. The next generation of Car-Net includes an updated mobile app, a long list of no-charge services for five years, and a variety of subscription options for customer flexibility—including in-car Wi-Fi capability when you subscribe to a data plan. Car-Net Hotspot allows passengers to access the internet with up to four connected devices simultaneously, including compatible tablets, smartphones, laptops, gaming devices, and more—all at 4G LTE-enabled speed.
A suite of driver-assistance technology is available on the Atlas. Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Monitoring (Front Assist), Blind Spot Monitor, and Rear Traffic Alert are standard on all models. Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with Stop and Go, Lane Keeping System (Lane Assist), Park Distance Control (PDC), Park Steering Assistant (Park Assist), and Overhead View Camera (Area View) are also available. Traffic Jam Assist and Dynamic Road Sign Display, first debuting on the Atlas Cross Sport, will be available as well.
The Atlas will be available with two powertrains: a 276-horsepower V6 and a 235-hp four-cylinder turbocharged and direct-injection TSI® engine. Both engines are mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission and are available with Volkswagen’s 4Motion all-wheel-drive system. The 2.0T and 4Motion pairing is new for 2020, as is the availability of the four-cylinder engine on top trimlines. V6 models can tow up to 5,000 pounds, when equipped with the V6 Towing Package.
More details and pricing will be announced ahead of the launch in the Spring of 2020.
The Atlas was the first Volkswagen designed, engineered and produced as part of Volkswagen’s North American region strategy. Assembled at Volkswagen’s Chattanooga, Tennessee factory alongside the Volkswagen Passat and the all-new Atlas Cross Sport, the Atlas has become a major player in the U.S. market since its initial release. Volkswagen has now invested more than $2.6 billion in the area and has about 3,800 direct employees in Tennessee.