Friday, 28 October 2016
VW pushes out SUV boundaries in US
alongside the Passat for the North American market at its Chattanooga assembly plant in Tennessee, but only with gasoline engines.Volkswagen has invested an additional €900 million in the facility where production will begin early next year.
Chattanooga is the only automotive manufacturing facility in the world to receive Platinum certification for its environmental excellence by the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) program.
“This is the biggest and boldest Volkswagen we have ever built in the United States, delivering the distinctive design and craftsmanship we’re known for, now with room for seven,” said Hinrich J. Woebcken, Volkswagen chief executive officer of North America Region.
The Volkswagen Atlas (above) opens up an important segment for the brand: midsize SUVs formed a tenth of all new registrations in the USA in 2015. For the first time, Volkswagen’s Atlas now offers a model in this high-volume class in the category between the Tiguan and the Touareg that is fully tailored to American needs.
Building on the modular transverse matrix (MQB) from Volkswagen, the Atlas has the latest Volkswagen design DNA. With a length of 5,037 mm, a width of 1,979 mm and a height of 1,768 mm the Atlas is larger than any other Volkswagen on sale in the USA.
VW claims Atlas is the only vehicle in its class to offer the Automatic Post-Collision Braking System. This automatically initiates a deceleration of the vehicle when a primary collision is detected by the airbag sensors, thus helping reduce residual kinetic energy and, in turn, the chance of additional damage.
Atlas will arrive with a choice of two powertrains: a 2-litre four-cylinder TSI engine with gasoline direct injection and turbocharging to give 175 kW/238 PS and the already available 3.6-litre VR6 engine giving 206 kW/280 PS. Both engines drive through an eight-speed transmission.
Atlas can be configured either as front-wheel-drive or with 4Motion all- wheel-drive in combination with the VR6 engine. The 4Motion system has a Driving Mode Selection feature that allows the driver to select specific parameters based on driving conditions. US Environmental Protection Agency EPA fuel economy estimates will be released ahead of the launch in Spring of 2017.