Months from now, Volkswagen will commence sales of its new Atlas SUV (2018 model year) in the United States. But as early as now, the German carmaker is making sure that it would be able to attract more customers for the new Atlas by disclosing that a performance-inspired R-Line package is up for grabs for its latest SUV.
This new trim will be available to the SE and SEL models of the 2018 VW Atlas, effectively enhancing their appearance both inside and out. The overall effect would be an Atlas that looks more dynamic and sportier than a typical model. Exterior enhancements packed in the R-Line trim include the fitment of distinct bumpers -- with integrated air intakes at the front bumper and a glossy black diffuser on the rear bumper.
Further exterior details include new side skirts, 20-inch aluminum-alloy twin-spoke wheels and R-Line badging. Interior improvements, meanwhile, come with an R-Line steering wheel clip as well as stainless-steel sport pedal covers. As soon as the driver starts up the SUV, the Modular Infotainment Platform (MIB II) infotainment system lights up with R-Line logo.
The 2018 VW Atlas R-Line will be offered in two available powertrains: a turbocharged direct-injection 2.0-liter 4-cylinder TSI engine that offers 238 hp (177 kW) of max output and a 3.6-liter V6 engine capable of delivering up to 280 hp (208 kW) of output. Both are paired to an eight-speed transmission. The 4-cylinder powered Atlas with R-Line is only available in front-wheel drive while the V6-powered SUV with the same package could be availed in either front-wheel drive or the advanced 4Motion all-wheel drive system.
Basically, VW developed the Atlas to further penetrate the auto markets in the US and China (known as Teramont). While the carmaker is considering selling the new Atlas in some markets in Europe, it first needs to determine if it is the right SUV to offer in the region. VW will commence sales of the Atlas in the US in the spring of 2017, with the R-Line package to be made available later in the year.
Underpinned by VW’s Modular Transverse Matrix architecture, or MQB, the 2018 VW Atlas employs the brand’s current design language. It measures 198.3 inches in length, 77.9 inches in width and 69.6 inches in height – making it the largest SUV from the German carmaker to be built in the US.
The China-bound Teramont, meanwhile, will be offered with three powertrain options – two versions of 2.0-liter TFSI engine developing 186hp and 220hp of outputs, and a 2.5-liter V6 TFSI engine generating 299hp of output. The series production of the Atlas has already started at the carmaker’s Chattanooga facility in Tennessee. The German company has invested over $900 million to improve the site’s current facilities and expand the production space by at least 26 percent (or around 665,000 square feet).