Volkswagen Atlas vs. Atlas Cross Sport for Sale in West Warwick, RI


The 2020 VW Atlas and the 2020 VW Atlas Cross Sport are like most sets of siblings: they have a lot of similarities, yet plenty of differences. While the three-row Volkswagen Atlas debuted for the 2018 model year, the Atlas Cross Sport is a brand-new, two-row five-passenger offshoot. While the two vehicles don’t necessarily appeal to different markets, each has its nuances that will strike the fancy of one driver versus another. Let’s explore those similarities and differences.

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Exterior Differences

It’s not really fair to the Atlas Cross Sport to call it merely a slightly smaller version of the Atlas; they share a wheelbase, and the Atlas’ body is just 2.8 inches longer. Overall, the Atlas Cross Sport has a lower roofline that reduces the height of the side windows and gives the vehicle a sleeker and more athletic look. The Atlas, on the other hand, is longer and more conservative in its design. If you prefer aesthetics and a vehicle that’s easier to park in cities, you’ll probably find the Atlas Cross Sport more fitting. But if you’re more interested in ample space for multiple passengers or large cargo, the traditional Atlas is the clear winner, especially if you travel with passengers in a range of ages. Here’s an example of the Atlas’s versatility: if you have a child seat in the second row, you don’t have to remove it to slide the second row forward to allow somebody into the third row. That versatility goes a long way on family road trips.

Interior Differences

The inside of the Atlas Cross Sport is touch more striking than the Atlas, with detailed door-panel stitching and interesting two-tone color schemes. The Atlas is more family-focused, so it shirks some of those strictly aesthetic attributes for a more straightforward scheme (that’s not to say it’s any less desirable, as it still comes loaded with amenities), of course with the same high-quality materials. Aesthetically, it’s really a toss-up – a mere matter of preference – but younger drivers may be more keen on the Atlas Cross Sport’s more forward look. The Atlas is more spacious, of course, providing 15.2 more cubic feet of cargo space behind the second row than its sibling (55.5 cu. ft. versus 40.3 cu. ft.) and 96.8 cu. ft. versus 77.8 cu. ft. with the second row folded flat. That said, the Atlas Cross Sport is roomier than many of its segment rivals and offers more second-row legroom than the Atlas.

Mechanical Differences

Under the hood, these models are more or less identical. A turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine making 235 hp and 258 lb.-ft. of torque is the standard powerplant for each, with an available upgrade in the form of a 3.6-liter V6 (276 hp and 266 lb.-ft. of torque). Front-wheel drive is standard for each, though both can be ordered with all-wheel drive, and an eight-speed automatic is the sole transmission. The main difference is weight, but this doesn’t really have a noticeable impact on acceleration differences among both models.

Pricing Differences

While both of these vehicles are priced well for what they include, the Atlas Cross Sport is a little less expensive. The FWD Atlas Cross Sport S trim with the turbo four-cylinder engine has a starting MSRP of $30,545, while the Atlas with the same drivetrain and trim level is exactly $1,000 more. The maxed-out Atlas Cross Sport SEL Premium R-Line with the V6 engine and AWD carries an MSRP of $49,795. VW doesn’t offer an R-Line Package for the regular Atlas, so its range-topper is a bit less expensive ($48,995) than the Cross Sport’s.

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