VW reveals US-bound Atlas seven-seater SUV

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Volkswagen has unveiled its Atlas seven-seat SUV, marking its first-ever foray into this sector.

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The Atlas will be built at the Volkswagen Chattanooga assembly plant in Tennessee.

The new model launches in the US in the spring before arriving towards the end of the year in the Russian and Middle Eastern markets.

Launched in the wake of the emissions saga, the new model opens up an important segment for the brand: midsize SUVs formed a tenth of all new registrations in the USA in 2015.

This is the biggest and boldest Volkswagen we have ever built in the United States, delivering the distinctive design and craftsmanship were known for, now with room for seven, said Hinrich J. Woebcken, Volkswagen CEO of North America Region.

The Atlas is built on the modular transverse matrix (MQB) platform and brings a length of 5,037mm, a width of 1,979mm and a height of 1,768mm. The interior brings a folding seat solution to access the rear plus latest connectivity features. Volkswagen Car-Net offers a wide range of online services, including standard App-Connect technology that offers integration with the three major smartphone platforms Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink. The new Atlas model also features a Fender Premium AudioSystem with 12 speakers and a 480 Watt amplifier.

Two engine variants are on offer: a 238hp 2.0 TSI four-cylinder turbo and a 3.6 VR6, both with eight-speed automatic transmission. Both models come with front-wheel drive with the VR6 also offered with 4Motion all-wheel drive. Fuel economy figures from the Environmental Protection Agency EPA will be released ahead of the launch.

Driver assistance features on offer include a segment-first Automatic Post-Collision Braking System, which automatically brakes the car when a primary collision is detected by the airbag sensors. Depending on trim level, other technologies include: Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC); Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking (Front Assist); Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Traffic Alert; Lane Departure Warning (Lane Assist), and Parking Steering Assistant (Park Assist).

The Atlas will be built alongside the Passat for North America at the Volkswagen Chattanooga assembly plant in Tennessee.

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.

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