2019 Volkswagen Atlas


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2019 Volkswagen Atlas Performance Review


Performance: 6.8

The 2019 VW Atlas is good for city driving and highway cruising, though it struggles to deliver the quick bursts of power needed for highway passing. It remains comfortable and composed on the road, and it handles like a smaller car.

  • "On the very frozen paved and unpaved roads upon which we drove our V6 Atlas, it impressed us with its docile nature and ease of use, as well as grip helped in no small part by studded winter tires." -- Autoweek (2018)
  • "I said in my first impressions of the Atlas that 'as long as performance is adequate, the 2018 Atlas has a chance to make some sorely needed positive noise for Volkswagen.' It clears that bar with some room to spare." -- Cars.com (2018)

Acceleration and Power

The VW Atlas has a standard 2.0-liter turbo-four engine that produces 235 horsepower. A 3.6-liter V6 that makes 276 horsepower is available. Both come with an eight-speed automatic transmission.

The V6 engine has enough power to handle daily driving around town, but acceleration can be sluggish, especially at highway speeds. When properly equipped, this vehicle can tow up to 5,000 pounds.

The base Atlas earns estimates of 22 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. Those numbers are good for the class. With its V6 engine, this SUV earns 17/24 mpg city/highway.

  • The basic 4-cylinder engine … is adequate for suburban duties, but anyone planning longer drives might want to consider the V6. Then again, the Atlas is not light (around 4,500 pounds) … so even this option is hardly a speed demon." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • The main downside is that neither engine has much muscle. A full complement of family and vacation gear is going to require patience. This is one of the roomiest vehicles in its class, but also one of the slowest." -- Autotrader
  • … overall, the Atlas is engaging enough and its smooth-shifting 8-speed automatic transmission is standard." -- New York Daily News (2018)

Handling and Braking

The Volkswagen Atlas cruises smoothly on most pavement. It drives like a smaller vehicle, remaining balanced and exhibiting minimal lean around turns. It earns praise for its steering and brake feel. Front-wheel drive comes standard, and all-wheel drive is available.

  • "This is where some European edge sneaks in. Although the Atlas has a sumptuous ride quality approaching that of a luxury vehicle, there’s still control and composure when it’s steered around corners." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Comfort and serenity are the hallmarks of the driving experience. The Atlas feels stable and composed, and the high driving position will please many." -- Autotrader
  • "Ride quality was great and the Atlas moved confidently on the road, even over sections of broken pavement. Through corners, there's a bit of body roll, but not so much that the SUV feels loose or out of control." -- Cars.com (2018)
U.S. News Best Price Program

2019 Volkswagen Atlas

MSRP: $30,895 - $48,395

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