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Volkswagen Introduces the All-New Atlas: Designed with Families in Mind


Published: Tuesday, June 26, 2018 | 9:52 PM

2018atlas475Slotting between the Tiguan and Tourareg is the all-new Volkswagen Atlas. The Atlas adds a much-needed third-row for families that require more seating than the other models has to offer. Designed and assembled in America, the Atlas has American tastes in mind with a smooth ride and an ample selection of gadgets and goodies.

I found the Atlas very useful. I had to move a medium-sized bookcase, all it took was the third row to be down, the middle seats to be slid forward, and it fit beautifully. The wide opening made loading and removal a breeze.

Available in five trims: S, SE, SE with technology, SEL, and SEL Premium, this review will focus on the SE.

2018atlasdashLoaded with simulated leather upholstery, push-button start, automatic headlights, a power driver seat, heated front seats, rear sunshades, a blind-spot monitoring system, and a larger 8-inch touchscreen interface.

A turbocharged 4 cylinder engine is standard, delivering 235 horses and 258 pound feet of torque. Expect to get 22/city, 26/highway, and 24/combined mpg.

The spacious interior of the Atlas is one of its selling points. There is plenty of room front, middle and rear for passengers of all sizes and shapes. The front row seating is comfortable and nicely adjustable. The second row seating slides forward and back depending on the space needed and it has a 60/40 folding capacity for additional cargo. The third row seating is even roomy and not that hard to get to. It’s a fully integrated part of the vehicle instead of an afterthought.

As with all Volkswagens, the dash is simple yet elegant with easy to read controls and gauges. Pretty much everything is digital so there is a bit of a learning curve but once you get used to it operation is a snap.

2018atlastrunk20.6 cubic feet of cargo space is available with all seats up, this number jumps to 96.8 cubic feet with all the seats stowed. It’s easy to fold the seats with just a pull.

The Atlas drives like a smaller car. It’s easy to maneuver and has pretty good pick up. The eight-speed automatic transmission fits well with the turbocharged engine and helps give the Atlas its car-like feel. It gets around town easily but due to its size and weight, curvier roads are a bit more challenging. The ride is smooth and the cabin is quiet.

Need seating for seven in a vehicle that drives like a dream? Give the all-new Volkswagen Atlas SE a test drive.

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