Volkswagen Atlas Sport Concept debuts in NY

Volkswagen Atlas Sport Concept debuts in NY

The design of the Atlas Tanoak is separate from the Atlas SUV on which it's based, with only slight similarities between the two cars. Volkswagen started with the Atlas 7-seat SUV and its underlying MQB platform, then injected 16 inches of extra length.

The Atlas Tanoak Pickup has been named after a tree that's native to the U.S. Pacific Coast and grows to 135 feet.

Like the Atlas Cross Sport Concept that debuted on Tuesday, the Atlas Tanoak is part of Volkswagen's vision to build a family of large Atlas vehicles.

According to Automotive News Europe, the new truck will be unveiled this week and that it is a truck based on the Atlas SUV model. At the back, there's a 64-inch long bed, while the cabin has room for five.

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Tuesday evening, before the NY auto show media days began, VW revealed a "near-production" concept for a shorter, five-seat version of the current Atlas, to go on sale next year as the 2020 Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport.

It looks beefier than the Atlas from the side, with the wheel arches scoring more cladding for greater muscle, swallowing the 20-inch wheels and 275/55 tyres easily. A second version of the Atlas Cross Sport has a conventional hybrid drive without an external battery charging function (HEV).

Like its intended foes, the Tanoak isn't being considered as a hard-core working pickup, but as a lifestyle machine with a greater focus on luxury and comfort and equipment and a more secondary focus on carrying ability. The Atlas Tanoak has a more rugged appearance to match its off-road capabilities with a raised bonnet and rugged underbody protection, which houses a centrally mounted winch and carabiner.

Both powertrains use VW's 276-hp, 3.6-liter V6 engine and a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

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As far as controlling the automatic, "it was intentionally created to be very sturdy, so that it can be operated every day by people who are used to driving a pickup, even while wearing work gloves", Volkswagen noted in a release.

As we write this, we have little more to go on than what was included in the press release.

But the big reason VW can't just ship the Amarok here is that pesky Chicken Tax, which greatly favors domestically produced trucks.

The Atlas Cross Sport, which the German automaker called "a near-production" version, features a coupe-like profile and a sporty stance. Indeed, VW suggests you'd only see around 26 miles of EV range, and that's with only the rear axle motor in play.

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The Atlas Cross Sport's dashboard is dominated by three big displays: the 12.3-inch Volkswagen Digital Cockpit, 10.1-inch central touchscreen with proximity sensors and gesture control, and a smaller touchscreen for the climate control settings.

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