A shortened, five-seat version of the Atlas, VW hopes the Cross-Sport will help capture even more of the SUV market that now makes up more than half of its sales.
The Atlas Cross Sport is 2.8 inches shorter and 2.3 inches lower than the Atlas. Despite that, it maintains the same wheelbase and the same engine options: a 276 hp V6 or a 235 hp turbocharged I4.
“Building off the success of the Atlas seven-seater midsize SUV, we see an opportunity for a five-seater model that offers even more style and almost as much interior space,” said Scott Keogh, CEO, Volkswagen Group of America. “We look forward to entering this growing segment with the Atlas Cross Sport, which offers outstanding Volkswagen technology, driver-assist features, style, and value.”
The biggest change will come to the exterior. A new three-bar chrome grille distinguishes the Cross Sport from the Atlas as well as a new light signature, which extends from the middle bar to give the front end a holistic design. A new hood and a new bumper lend the Cross Sport an air of aggression that should serve it well in the segment.
The coupe-styling will certainly be the biggest appeal of the new Cross Sport’s design. The sloping roofline helps the Atlas variant cut a more dashing figure and, along with the optional 21-inch rims, should make it stand out in a busy segment.
Inside, too, the Cross Sport improves. Along with new stitching accents on the door inserts and seats, a new steering wheel with simplified buttons should also make the Atlas easier to use.
That’ll be important because VW wants this to be a tech showcase. As we’ve discussed previously, the Atlas Cross Sport will be a high tech showcase.
The Cross Sport will come with the ability to display speed limits, school zones, no-passing zones and more.
It will also offer Traffic Jam Assist, which operates between 0-37 mph and can follow the car ahead at a set distance (much like Adaptive Cruise Control). The system’s party trick, though, is that it can come to a full stop and help keep you centered in your lane.
Volkswagen’s updated Car-Net system, meanwhile, allows you to perform many of the key’s functions from your phone, offers a number of security functions, and can give turn your car into a wifi hotspot.
The first of these functions, called Remote Access, is free (for five years). Through a mobile app, you can lock, unlock, honk, start, and check on your car’s status from your phone.
The Safe & Secure package, which offers emergency assistance, anti-theft alerts, stolen vehicle location, and crash notifications, costs $99/year.
Volkswagen will offer you a free month of wifi (via Verizon), but you’ll have to pay after that.
Pricing won’t be available until later, but we do know that there will be eight trim levels: S, SE, SE w/Tech, SE w/Tech R-Line, SEL, SEL R-Line, SEL Premium, and SEL Premium R-Line.
Full pricing will be available closer to the car’s launch in Spring 2020.