Volkswagen unveiled the Atlas Tanoak concept at the New York Auto Show and now the company has provided the strongest hints yet that it could be going into production.
As part of the announcement that the Atlas Cross Sport and Atlas Tanoak concepts will be shown during Monterey Car Week, Volkswagen noted the event is where “manufacturers showcase what will and may become a reality.”
Volkswagen went on to say a production version of the Atlas Tanoak concept “may be on the cards” and specifically noted a production model would be “launched in Northern America’s vehicle class with the highest volumes.” That’s not exactly a confirmation, but it’s a pretty strong indicator that Volkswagen is seriously considering a production version of the pickup and might have determined there is enough demand to give it the green-light.
The fact that Volkswagen is openly suggesting the model could go into production is a stark change from earlier this year when the company said “there are currently no production plans.” That sentiment seems to have changed since the concept’s unveiling and Volkswagen of America CEO Hinrich Woebcken has suggested the company was trying to determine if there was enough demand to bring it to market.
While it remains unclear if Volkswagen will actually give the model the go ahead, the concept was based on the MQB platform and featured a 3.6-liter V6 engine that produced 276 hp (205 kW / 280 PS) and 266 lb-ft (360 Nm) of torque. It was connected to an eight-speed automatic transmission and an all-wheel-drive system which enabled the truck to accelerate from 0-60 mph (0-96 km/h) in 8.5 seconds.
The Atlas Cross Sport concept, on the other hand, previews a production model that is “scheduled to launch as early as 2019.” It will be built in Chattanooga, Tennessee alongside the standard Atlas and offer seating for up to five people.