2024 Volkswagen Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport walk around at the Chicago Auto Show

The 2024 Volkswagen Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport have arrived as moderately refreshed SUVs at the Chicago Auto Show. A tweaked exterior design joins a thoroughly overhauled interior. Plus, Volkswagen has done some powertrain shuffling. For starters, Volkswagen has upgraded the base 2-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine making it the only engine option. That means the upgrade of a V6 is no longer available. The beefed-up four-cylinder now cranks out 269 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque, additions of 34 and 15 respectively. It still lags behind the outgoing V6 in horsepower, but now surpasses it in torque. Maximum towing capacity stays the same at 5,000 pounds, and Volkswagen has kept the same 8-speed automatic transmission to shift gears. Furthermore, Front wheel drive remains standard, while all-wheel drive remains an option. Exterior changes are most obvious in the dark. The new daytime running lights run all the way across the front of the Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport, dominating the design. This new light and the light-up Volkswagen badge are standard on all but the base models of both Atlas models. The front fascia of each is updated with revised side air intakes, and the coupe-ified Cross Sport uniquely gains gloss-black trim details to set it apart. Both Atlas models get larger rear spoilers and full-width rear tail lights — again, base models are left out of the full-width lighting. New wheel designs are available across the board and range from 18-inch to 21-inch options, the latter of which come exclusively with the R-Line appearance models. Lastly, the Cross Sport adds a special rear diffuser to give it a sportier look than its more traditionally shaped sibling. On the inside, Volkswagen has added its newest suite of tech to the Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport. This means the Atlas gets Volkswagen’s Digital Cockpit Pro infotainment system that plays on a 12-inch touchscreen display. Plus, it gets Volkswagen’s Climatronic touch controls for temperature adjustment. We’ve been deeply disappointed in this new control stack in testing of the GTI and Golf R, and it looks like we’ll be in for a similar experience in the new Atlas. Standing alongside the new infotainment is a new, configurable 10.25-inch digital instrument cluster that comes standard. Wireless Apple CarPlay, wireless Android Auto and wireless phone charging are all along for the ride, but you can plug in to any of the eight available USB-C ports scattered throughout the interior, too. Since Volkswagen’s new infotainment/climate control system is an all-inclusive setup, the whole interior needed a redesign to fit it. The Atlas features a totally new center stack, dash and door panel design. The new shifter is the same nub-style shifter seen in automatic GTIs or Golf Rs. An intriguing light-up dash displays the specific model’s name in front of the passenger, and ambient lighting is now simply everywhere you look. It's all very clean and minimalistic, but we’ll see how usable the new Atlas interior may be once we get our hands on one. Other notable upgrades include a new leatherette dash and leatherette center console for more soft-touch surfaces. Volkswagen also offers available quilted leather seats in the top model, all in an effort to amp up the niceness of the Atlas’ interior. More features have been made standard equipment, including desirables like ventilated front seats, a heated steering wheel (with shift paddles) and a height adjustable passenger seat. On the tech side, Volkswagen added its IQ driver assistance suite as standard equipment, which means every Atlas will have Volkswagen’s lane-centering system alongside others like blind spot monitoring and front and rear emergency braking. Adaptive cruise control can be added as an option. Volkswagen isn’t talking price for the 2024 Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport yet, but expect those details to be made public closer to the third quarter of 2023 when both models will go on sale. For more visit #volkswagen #vwatlascrosssport #vw

Video Transcript

ZAC PALMER: What's up, guys? Zac Palmer with Autoblog here. And to the left and right of me, I have Volkswagen Atlases. Regular Atlas on the left, Atlas Cross Sport on the right. Let's start over there with the coupefied SUV version of the Atlas. Now, Volkswagen revealed this new SUV here at the Chicago Auto Show.

You'll notice from the front, there are a number of design changes, the big one being all of the new lights on this thing. You notice the full-width light bar here, LED, in the front and the light-up Volkswagen badge. Now you'll see this on every single new Atlas except for the base model. So get used to more lights.


It also has a new grille, a new lower fascia, all a little bit sportier, a little bit more aggressive. The grille itself is bigger. And then when we move along to the side, you'll notice we get some new wheel designs, new 18-inch to 21-inch. That's the highest that you'll see on the new Atlas.

All the way back here, we see the typical roofline that we're used to with the Cross Sport. So this has the sort of slanted crossover coupe rear end. Only a two-row, versus-- the normal Atlas is a three-row. And then, just like the front, the rear also gets new lighting. So we have a full-width tail light here. Looks really, really neat, actually, when it's dark outside. And just like the front, we have a light-up Volkswagen badge on the rear.

Now, all the way at the bottom, the Atlas Cross Sport has one little design thing that the normal Atlas doesn't, which is this new diffuser. That's new for 2024. You notice that the normal Atlas, which we'll go to next, does not have that. But the minor changes are really on the outside. The big changes are on the inside. So we'll take a look at that next.

So welcome to the inside of the 2024 Volkswagen Atlas. You'll notice in here we have a totally redesigned interior. Some of it is reminiscent of the GTI or Golf R with the styling and tech. In front, we have a totally new touchscreen. This is a 12.3-inch Digital Cockpit Pro touchscreen. We're kind of critical of this thing. In the GTI and Golf R, it's not the most user-friendly. You notice all-touch-capacitive buttons on here. No more knobs, no more dials. That's not a thing. Everything is touch-related.

Now, this center stack right here, the console, all new as well. You notice a lot of gloss black on here. This is going to look very fingerprint-y very quickly, honestly. But we have a new shifter knob. So this is a similar style to what you'll see on a Porsche 911 or other Volkswagens, or Audis, even, at this point. This is a Volkswagen Group thing.

And because we have this new center stack with a shift by wire, Volkswagen was able to open up the bottom down here, and we get storage in the under center console tray that we did not have before in the Atlas. Now, before we go to the back, I'll point out one last thing, though, in the front. We got this digital instrument cluster here. It's now standard 10.25 inches up there, along with the touch-capacitive steering wheel buttons.

So a lot more tech in here. Let's hop in the back real quick. So welcome to the back seat of the Atlas Cross Sport. It's here that you'll notice we have this slanted roof that really cuts in on headroom. Now, I'm not actually touching the roof. And I'm 5' 10", so this isn't so bad. But it's definitely a lot less room than you'll have in the big, three-row Atlas.

Now, back here, we can also check out some of the new luxury amenities, such as the seats. We have some nice blue perforations, some white piping on the seats. It's all very luxurious for an Atlas, especially versus the previous one. And I'll also point out, down here, we have a ton of ports. So one new thing that Volkswagen changed with Atlas, all USB-C ports all around, much higher charging speed, which would be great if you're stuffing a lot of people in here for a big road trip.

With that, that's the new Atlas. How about we pop on over and look at that red one over there, though, just to get an idea of what the three-row looks like versus this two-row coupefied Cross Sport. So we've been looking at the Cross Port, but we have the normal Atlas here, the very traditionally shaped, three-row family SUV. The interior and exterior changes are honestly all the same. Light bar up front Light-up badge also in front.

Now, the front fascia has a little bit less gloss black. It's not exactly the same as on the Cross Sport, but it's very, very similar. As we move along to the side is where you'll notice-- well, obviously, the Atlas is a traditional-shaped crossover. Has a lot of space in the back for your cargo, groceries, everything that you're used to from the pre-refreshed Atlas. So there you have it. That was the new 2024 Volkswagen Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport.