We all know that Volkswagen is betting a lot on its all-new 2018 Atlas SUV. The company decided to offer the seven-passenger vehicle as part of an effort to attract more consumers to the brand and win back its name after its crushing diesel emissions scandal. The scandal has cost the company an exorbitant amount of money. It has also caused American consumers and dealers to question the integrity of the brand. But since the Atlas was unveiled in November, 2016 in Santa Monica, CA, things have been looking up. People have reacted positively to the bold three-row SUV and are anxiously awaiting its arrival in dealerships. The vehicle will arrive this spring and now, we know that it may come with some seriously cool accessories. That’s because at the 2017 Chicago Auto Show, Volkswagen unveiled the Atlas Weekend Edition concept vehicle. The accessories that come with the concept help make the Atlas the perfect vehicle for a camping trip. The company says many of the concept’s accessories will be available from Volkswagen dealers when the vehicle goes on sale soon. Let’s take a look, there, at what you could possibly outfit your new Atlas SUV with.
Atlas Weekend Edition Concept an Homage to “Weekender” Packages
Volkswagen says fans of its brand may appreciate the fact that the concept vehicle pays homage to the “Weekender” packages offered on the classic Vanagon and Eurovan pop-up camper models. While there’s no sleeping area in the Atlas, the accessories offered on the concept definitely make the vehicle fit for a camping trip. The company says they enhance the Chattanooga-built SUV’s versatility with innovative cargo solutions.
The Volkswagen Atlas Weekend Edition concept is based on the 2018 Atlas SEL Premium model, which is powered by a 3.6-liter VR6 engine that churns out 276 horsepower. The engine is mated to an eight-speed transmission and paired with Volkswagen’s advanced 4Motion all-wheel drive with Drive Mode Select.
The vehicle sits on 18-inch Prisma wheels that are finished in a custom anthracite gray color. It definitely gives the vehicle an outdoorsy vibe. What truly makes the vehicle stand out, however, is a cargo box that’s positioned on top of the roof. It’s a modern variation of the pop-up roof called the Urban Loader. What’s great about it is that when it’s empty, it’s not obtrusive. It offers a sleek, minimized appearance. When needed for stowing cargo, however, it expands to offer 17.7 cubic-feet of space. The concept vehicle also features base carrier bars for attaching accessories. It’s something the weekend adventurer would truly benefit from as you’re able to easily attach your skis, snowboards, kayaks or bikes. It’s also easy to access the extra storage area as there are practical side steps to give you a boost.
Moving inside the concept vehicle now, there are features to help keep passengers happy while on those long trips to the mountain, lake or other exciting outdoor location. Second row passengers, for example, can take advantage of universal tablet mounts positioned on the seat headrests in front of them. It allows passengers to bring any popular variety of touchscreen tablet, including Android and iOS, to help keep them entertained on long rides.
“The design provides easy access to the home button on the most common models, and the tablets can use the Atlas available Media Control feature using Wi-Fi technology for Android and iOS tablets and smartphones,” writes the company in a press release.
If you’re an animal lover, one of the other accessories on this concept vehicle might interest you because it allows pets to ride in comfort. There’s an incredibly robust cargo divider inside the vehicle which provides a pet-friendly barrier behind the second row. If you have a large dog, this feature could definitely come in handy. There’s no way fido would be able to jump from the rear to the front, keeping you safe from distraction and free of dog hair while driving. Other unique accessories offered on the Weekend Edition concept vehicle include window and hood deflectors, a heavy-duty trunk liner with seat-back coverage, a privacy cargo cover, all-weather rubber mats, splashguards and wheel locks. Again, Volkswagen says many of the accessories will be available from Volkswagen dealers when the vehicle goes on sale this spring.
Atlas R-Line Performance Package
The unveiling of the Volkswagen Atlas Weekend Edition concept vehicle in Chicago came shortly after the Detroit Auto Show, where the R-Line performance package for the Atlas was unveiled. The performance package for the Atlas SE and SEL trims adds stylish 20-inch aluminum-alloy twin-spoke wheels to the exterior as well as special R-Line badging and unique front and rear bumpers. Inside the vehicle, Volkswagen says the performance package welcomes drivers with the R-Line logo on the start screen of the vehicle’s Modular Infotainment Platform. Other features include an R-Line steering wheel clip and stainless-steel sport pedal covers. Now when it comes to performance, Volkswagen says like the standard Atlas model the R-Line will be available in two engine options. Customers will be able to choose from either the four-cylinder TSI turbo or 3.6-liter V6. Both are mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. The company’s advanced 4 Motion all-wheel drive system is available on the V6 engined models. Now we’re not exactly sure when the R-Line package will be available. Volkswagen, however, says it will go on sale sometime after the Atlas arrives in dealerships in the spring.
Clearly, Volkswagen is continuing to place emphasis on its all-new Atlas SUV. That’s because the company needs the vehicle to sell well to help give it a boost and win back the hearts of American consumers. While people responded well to the vehicle from the start, the additional unveilings of the Atlas R-Line performance package in Detroit and the Atlas Weekend Edition concept vehicle in Chicago have generated even more interest in it.