Odd name, but better than Teramont.
Volkswagen has a lot of making up to do after that whole Dieselgate scandal shook up the motoring industry and new models seem like a good way to do it. The latest offering scheduled for an official reveal towards the end of October is a large three-row SUV. So far it looks set to be called Atlas, although it’s not clear if that’s derived from a world map because the SUV will be capable of going off the beaten path or if it’s named after the Greek god condemned to hold up the heavens on his shoulders for eternity.
It would be fitting, holding the spherical VW logo aloft to try and bring peace to the brand. VW is known to have filed the name Teramont at the same time as Atlas, so it could be worse. It would, however, break from convention if the SUV's name was not to start with a T. But Tennessee is where the Atlas will be built at Volkswagen’s Chattanooga plant, so there's that. The first full production model is expected to be revealed at the LA Auto Show next month and sales are expected to start early 2017. The SUV will seat seven in a spacious cabin making it the biggest offering from Volkswagen, but pricing wise it should fall in the middle of Volkswagen’s SUV range, a rung above the Tiguan and one below the Touareg.
This needs to happen for it to be competitive against the likes of Ford’s Explorer and Toyota’s Highlander. The Atlas will be built on VW’s modular transverse matrix platform known as MQB, which means it could well be the size of Audi’s flagship Q7. Powering the Atlas should be left to two powertrains, a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-pot with a reported 238 hp available and a bigger 3.6-liter V6 with 280 hp. The camouflaged Atlas looks impressive, but when those covers come off we’ll be able to see if it’s as good looking as we expect, but for now we know it’s big, seats at least seven, can soak up a muddy road with ease and will be similar to the CrossBlue Concept.