Volkswagen has unveiled the Volkswagen Atlas Cross Concept, at the ongoing New York Autoshow. The Atlas Cross Sport previews a five-seater Coupe SUV version of the seven-seater Atlas SUV that went on sale (in the U.S.) in 2017.
The Atlas Cross Sport debuts alongside the brute Tanoak pick-up truck concept, to illustrate how the Atlas range of vehicles can be expanded into a model family of its own, as part of the Volkswagen’s global SUV model strategy.
The near-production Atlas Cross Sport concept is based on Volkswagen's MQB platform, and is powered by a plug-in hybrid drivetrain with 355 horsepower and a claimed 40 km of all-electric range. A conventional mild hybrid version of the same powertrain, will follow in due time, that produces 310 hp.
The actual production vehicle is scheduled to be launched in the U.S. market starting in 2019, and will be built alongside the seven-passenger Atlas and Passat sedan at VW’s Chattanooga plant in Tennessee.
The Atlas Cross Sport concept uses the same 3.6-liter V6 FSI engine as in the seven-seater Atlas, that outputs 276 hp and 366 Nm of torque on its own. In the Cross Sport concept, the engine is boosted by two electric motors. The front axle motor develops 54 hp and 219 Nm, while the rear axle motor makes another 114 hp and 269 Nm.
Electrical power for the motors is supplied by a compact 18.0 kWh lithium-ion battery housed in the central tunnel. The total drive system output is 355 hp. Combined torque is rated at a whopping 670 Nm. The Cross Sport concept is claimed to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in just 5.4 seconds, top speed is rated at 209 km/h.
The mild hybrid version will use the same V6 engine and electric motors, but with a smaller 2.0 kWh battery, the mild hybrid version would produce 310 hp and enable the vehicle to accelerate from 0-100 km/h in 6.5 seconds. Top speed remains the same at 209 km/h.
In both versions, power is transmitted to a six-speed ‘DSG’ dual-clutch automatic transmission which sends power to all four wheels through Volkswagen’s 4Motion all-wheel drive system.
The Atlas Cross Sport PHEV concept can be driven in five different drive modes (E-Mode, Hybrid, GTE, Off-Road, and Battery Charge), and seven further settings that augment the 4Motion system and traction setup.
The Atlas Cross Sport measures 4,846 mm in length, 1,734 in height and 2,029 mm in width – which makes it substantially larger than the Volkswagen Tiguan at 4,701 mm in length, 1,839 mm in width and 1,658 mm in height.
While it may carry two fewer seats, the wheelbase of the Cross Atlas is exactly the same as the seven-seater Atlas model – at 2,979 mm.
In terms of competitors – given the Atlas Cross Sport’s coupe SUV body style, and relatively large dimensions – it goes up against the likes of established rivals such as the BMW X6 and Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe.
On the inside, the Atlas Cross Sport’s architecture is largely influenced by the Atlas seven-seater – the 10.1-inch infotainment system touchscreen is located high on the instrument panel, and is equipped with gesture control functions. Alongside, the 12.3-inch Volkswagen Digital Cockpit screen can be configured to display information on driving, navigation and assistance functions as necessary.
Also, the gearbox selector lever has shift-by-wire functionality, and thus always remains in a central position. Short clicks activate the ‘R,’ ‘N’ and ‘D’ settings. A separate button integrated into the selector lever is used to engage the ‘P’ position.