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New York Motor Show

VW Atlas Cross Sport and Tanoak pick-up hit New York

Say hello to coupe-like SUV and pick-up concepts from VW

Published: 03 Apr 2018

The Americans among you will know about the VW Atlas. It’s a big, three-row MQB-based SUV Volkswagen doesn’t bother selling in Britain. Or anywhere in Europe, for that matter. So that means we probably won’t get these two either.

Presented at last week’s New York Motor Show, the Atlas Cross Sport and Atlas Tanoak (no, we don’t know how to pronounce it either) “illustrate how the Atlas range could be expanded into a model family”. The former is a “near-production” five-seat SUV with a “coupé-like rear body design” and hybrid drivetrain. The latter is what you Americans would call a “mid-size” pick-up, but what the rest of the world might call a “freaking massive” pick-up. At 2,030mm wide, it’s bulkier than a Bentley Bentayga. No joke.

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The production version of the Cross will be built alongside the regular Atlas and US-spec Passat at VW’s plant in Tennessee. In its press release VW talks about two different versions – both hybrids, one conventional and one plug-in – but it’s not clear whether these are confirmed for production. Both use a 276bhp 3.6-litre V6 and two electric motors, but the batteries are bigger in the PHEV, giving more power (355bhp plays 310bhp) and more EV range (26 miles versus 1.5).

The Tanoak, which uses the same V6 engine minus the batteries and electric motors, hasn’t been confirmed for production. Named for a tree native to the Pacific Coast that can grow up to 45m tall, its bed was designed to “transport bikes, boards and smaller boats”, and its cabin can seat five.

What do we reckon? Should VW a) make the pick-up and b) bring the Atlas in all its forms to Europe? Answers on a postcard.


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