Volkswagen Announces Five-Seater Version of 2019 Atlas SUV
Concept Version Headed to 2018 New York International Auto Show
Volkswagen just announced it would market a five-seat version of the Atlas SUV starting with the 2019 model year, giving the company’s Chattanooga, Tennessee, production facility one more model to build.
At an event in Chattanooga, Volkswagen Group of America President and CEO Hinrich J. Woebcken recommitted to the facility: “The Atlas has built strong momentum for Volkswagen in the SUV segment, and we are excited to grow our SUV portfolio with this new, Chattanooga-assembled five-passenger SUV. We are not only committed to this market, we are committed to our U.S. manufacturing home in Chattanooga, Tennessee.”
The five-seat Atlas is based on the same MQB platform as its seven-passenger sibling, although it appears to be several inches shorter than the bigger Atlas. Based on the single illustration provided by Volkswagen, it looks like it has a faster roofline and a slightly sportier stance.
Volkswagen will likely pitch the Atlas five-seater alternately as a less expensive base model on the low end and a stylish, premium sport-ute “coupe” in higher trims. We should be able to answer a few of those size and marketing questions once the SUV is shown in concept form at the 2018 New York International Auto Show.
The company claims it will spend $340 million to bring the Atlas five-seater to production in Chattanooga, expanding on the $900 million already spent to expand the plant to build the Atlas seven-seater. In addition to the two SUV variants, the plant builds the U.S.-market Passat midsize sedan, employing 2,800 people as of December 2016.