Originally developed for U.S. and China, the large seven-seat SUV might travel to some European countries.
Volkswagen has already announced it will sell a diesel-powered Atlas in Russia from 2017, but now the company’s head of fullsize product lines Elmar-Marius Licharz has revealed additional markets on the old continent might get it as well. In an interview with Autocar, Licharz admitted they are analyzing the prospects of doing a Europe-bound Atlas with a 190-hp version of the group’s familiar 2.0 TDI engine.
VW is concerned the 2017 Atlas might be too big to fit inside the typical European garage, so it’ll have to put a lot of thought into it and decide whether it would be the right move to bring the big SUV to Europe. That being said, Licharz believes there’s a market for the fullsize SUV in some European countries where the Atlas would peacfully coexist with the next-gen Touareg. If it will be given the green light, the Euro-spec Atlas will be built at the same Chattanooga factory in United States where there is enough spare capacity to handle the extra demand.
The Atlas is being considered not just for some European markets, but also for the Middle East where Licharz believes the seven-seat SUV would make sense and it might turn out to be quite popular.
Meanwhile, the U.S. version of the MQB-based 2017 Atlas will go on sale next spring and is going to slot above the yet unreleased seven-seat Tiguan. It’s going to be Volkswagen of America’s largest model ever and will be offered with 238-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter and 280-hp naturally-aspirated 3.6-liter VR6 gasoline engines hooked up to an eight-speed automatic. The four-cylinder variant will have a front-wheel-drive layout whereas the beefier six-cylinder model is going to be available with a 4Motion setup.
Pricing details have not been disclosed, but Autocar mentions the three-row SUV is going to undercut the Touareg, which kicks off at $49,495 in U.S.