Plenty of hidden details confirm its identity.
Volkswagen has been pretty busy of late, coming up with new technologies, making advances in cleaning up the way we commute, and launching hot, new products like the new Tiguan R. Despite impressive progress throughout a difficult year, it seems that Volkswagen is cooking up something more. A photo has just been released as part of its Spanish subsidiary Seat's press material on its newest powertrain testing center in Europe, a facility that saw around $35.7 million spent on it. As cool as this likely is for the people who work there, we're more interested in what this photo is showing us, namely a new SUV.
Since this comes from a Seat press release, this could well be a new offering from the Spanish company rather than one from VW, but it does have some styling elements that make us think that it's a Volkswagen. For one thing, the taillights seem to have the tapering shape that is seen on the Volkswagen Atlas, except it seems to be continuous, as a full-width taillight arrangement would be. For another, those wheels also seem to have a touch of VW to them, but they could work on a Seat or Audi too, although the latter is highly unlikely. We can also see a telling accent line on the rear fenders and a concave tailgate recess that gives yet more evidence of what we're looking at. Whichever company this does belong to, it certainly doesn't appear to be all-electric.
What we can see is that there are fake exhaust tips that hint at an internal combustion engine, while the fact that it's got both sets of wheels on a rolling road indicates all-wheel-drive. A panoramic glass roof seems to feature too. Crucially, there's one detail that all but confirms what vehicle this is.
If you look at the area of the glasshouse near the wing mirror, you can see an upswept accent line that runs into the hood - or at least it does if this is the production version of the SMV concept, a full-size electric SUV that would sit above the Atlas in the lineup. The rearmost section of glass also seems to mirror that of the concept, as does the roof spoiler. We're pretty sure of our guess, but we'll have more details for you as they become available.