Volkswagen Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport: Which is Better?
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We’ve already gone over the Tiguan vs Atlas and Taos vs Tiguan, so we thought we should go over more VW SUV’s. In this article, we will be discussing the similarities and differences between the VW Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport. Given they are both Atlas’, there are far more similarities than differences. We’ll be covering price, size, performance, reliability, and more to assist in deciding which model suits you best.
VW Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport – The Basics
The Volkswagen Atlas was introduced in 2017 and is a mid-size crossover SUV. It is one of five new SUVs that Volkswagen has released in the last 4 years. Since it was introduced in 2017, there has only been one generation, CA1. This generation is built on the MQB Volkswagen Group platform. It is positioned between the Tiguan and Touareg. The Atlas has gone through a facelift in 2020, which changed the front, wheels, taillights, and steering wheel. It became more modern and aesthetically pleasing for the end consumer. During its production, the trims available have been: SE, SE w/ tech, SEL, SEL R-Line, and SEL Premium R-Line.
The Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport was introduced in 2020 as part of the Atlas’ facelift. It is also a mid-size crossover SUV. Like the Atlas, the Cross Sport is another one of five SUVs that Volkswagen has released in the last 4 years. The CA1 generation was also built on the Volkswagen Group’s MQB platform. Like the Atlas, the Atlas Cross Sport also offers these trims: SE, SE w/ tech, SEL, SEL R-Line, SEL R-Line Black, SEL Premium, and SEL Premium R-Line.
Volkswagen Atlas Generation
- CA1 Atlas (2017-Present)
Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport Generations
- CA1 Atlas Cross Sport (2020-Present)
VW Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport Price
New Volkswagen Atlas Price
A VW base Atlas, SE, with a 2.0T engine starts at $35,095, while an Atlas SE with the same engine, but with VW 4motion starts at $36,995. The VW Atlas SE w/ tech comes with 2 different engine options: a 2.0T and a 3.6L V6. The Atlas SE w/ tech with the 2.0T engine starts at $39,265, and $41,165 with VW 4motion. An Atlas SE w/ tech with the 3.6L engine starts at $41,015, and $42,915 with VW 4motion.
The Atlas SEL also offers two engine options: a 2.0T and a 3.6L V6. However, this trim has VW’s 4motion standard. So, the Atlas SEL with the 2.0T 4motion engine starts at $44,865, while the 3.6L V6 4motion starts at $46,615. The Atlas SEL R-Line only comes with one engine, the 3.6L V6 4motion, and it starts at $48,015. Lastly, just like the SEL R-Line, the SEL Premium R-Line has the same 3.6L V6 engine and starts at $52,265.
New Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport Price
A VW base Atlas Cross Sport, SE, with a 2.0T engine starts at $34,830, while an Atlas Cross Sport SE with the same engine, but with VW 4motion starts at $36,730. The VW Atlas Cross Sport SE w/ tech comes with 2 different engine options: a 2.0T and a 3.6L V6. The Atlas Cross Sport SE w/ tech with the 2.0T engine starts at $39,000, and $40,900 with VW 4motion. An Atlas Cross Sport SE w/ tech with the 3.6L engine starts at $40,750, and $42,650 with VW 4motion.
The Atlas Cross Sport SEL also offers two engine options: a 2.0T and a 3.6L V6. However, this trim has VW’s 4motion standard. So, the Atlas Cross Sport SEL with the 2.0T 4motion engine starts at $44,600, while the 3.6L V6 4motion starts at $46,350. The Atlas Cross Sport SEL R-Line, unlike the Atlas, comes with two engine options: a 2.0T 4motion and the 3.6L V6 4motion. An Atlas Cross Sport SEL R-Line with the 2.0T 4motion starts at $46,000 and the 3.6L V6 4motion starts at $47,750. Lastly, the Atlas Cross Sport SEL Premium R-Line only offers a 3.6L V6 4motion engine and it starts at $52,000.
Used Volkswagen Atlas & Atlas Cross Sport Prices
When it comes to used VW Atlas’ vs Atlas Cross Sport, pricing is pretty much consistent with new prices. A used Atlas’ price ranges from $15,995 – $56,990 with an average price overall of $36,495*, depending on model year and mileage. A used Atlas Cross Sport’s price ranges from $29,800 – $59,900* with an average price overall of $44,850*, depending on model year and mileage. Given that the Atlas has been around a few years longer than the Atlas Cross sport, there are many Atlas’ that are cheaper than the Atlas Cross Sport. When it comes to price, both of these models are very close. Therefore, there may be other considerations that should hold residence over your purchasing decision, such as size.
*At the time of writing this article, we believe we are in a market where used vehicles are inflated, so consider that when seeing the used prices above.
General Atlas & Atlas Cross Sport Topics
VW Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport Size
Below are some basic details about the size and weight differences seen between the 2022 Volkswagen Atlas and the 2022 Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport.
VW Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport
When it comes to size, there are a lot of similarities, but clear differences. The two things that stick out to us are seating capacity and cargo space. The Atlas seats 7, while the Atlas Cross Sport seats 5. In other words, the Atlas has three rows of seats, while the Atlas Cross Sport has 2 rows of seats. This could be the sole reason someone would choose the Atlas over the Cross Sport, because they need three rows of seats. Now onto cargo space. The Atlas Cross Sport gets more cargo space without having to put any seats down. However, without any seats folded down, the Atlas only gets 20.6ft³. But when the third-row seat is folded down, the Atlas gets 55.5ft³, which is more than the Atlas Cross Sport without any seats folded down.
VW Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport Performance
For consistencies sake, we will be using the 2022 Atlas and 2022 Atlas Cross Sport factory performance specs.
Engines, Drivetrain, & Fuel Economy
A 2022 Volkswagen Atlas features a 2.0T engine that puts out 235hp and 258 lb-ft of torque in three different trims: S, SE with tech, and SEL. This engine comes with one transmission option: an 8-speed automatic Tiptronic transmission. There is also an upgrade option for VW’s 4motion AWD system. The Volkswagen Atlas also features a 3.6L V6 engine that puts down 276hp and 266lb-ft of torque in four different trims: SE with tech, SEL, SEL R-Line, and the SEL Premium R-Line. This engine comes with one transmission option: an 8-speed automatic Tiptronic transmission. There is also an upgrade option for VW’s 4motion AWD system.
The FWD 2.0T engine gets 21mpg in the city and 25mpg on the highway for a combined mpg of 23 with an 18.6gal fuel tank. While the AWD, 4motion, gets 20mpg in the city and 24mpg on the highway for a combined mpg of 22 with an 18.6gal fuel tank. The FWD 3.6L V6 gets 18mpg in the city and 24mpg on the highway for a combined mpg of 21 with an 18.6gal fuel tank. While the AWD, 4motion,3.6L V6 gets 17mpg in the city and 23mpg on the highway for a combined mpg of 20 with an 18.6gal fuel tank.
Atlas Cross Sport Performance
Since we are trying to keep this guide simple and to the point, the Atlas Cross Sport has the exact same, except for a few instances, engines and specs as the Atlas. The Atlas Cross Sport SEL R-Line offers two engine options instead of one on the Atlas: 2.0T & 3.6L V6 engine. This is the only difference between the two models.
VW Atlas & Atlas Cross Sport Reliability and Common Problems
Since the Atlas came out in 2017, there isn’t too much data to go on for the Atlas’ reliability. However, according to Consumer Reports, the VW Atlas ranks 21st out of 26 all mid-size SUVs. When it comes to choosing the best model years, we would advise looking for a 2021 model year.
Common problems that are seen in Atlas’ are as followed: strange engine noise on shutdown, premature fuel pump failure, a faulty clock spring, faulty fuel injectors, and unexpected coolant loss. There is a small sample size of Atlas’, so it is quite hard to provide a mileage estimate since they have only been around for about 5 years. However, there are many “electrical gremlins” that haunt the Atlas’, according to verified owners. If you choose to get an Atlas, make sure to get the best warranty package they offer regardless of the model year.
The 5 Most Common Volkswagen Atlas Problems
Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport
Especially since the Atlas Cross Sport was released in 2020, we expect there not to be much reliability data. However, Consumer Reports evidently reports it as average when compared to other mid-size crossovers. It is also difficult to find common problems for the Atlas Cross Sport, but after scrolling through forums we have found a few common problems other verified owners have experienced. Common problems such as A/C issues, electrical system bugs, backup camera malfunction, headlight issues, and unintentional braking issues. Yes, the last problem scares us too, but AutoBlog has some more information here.
VW Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport – Which is Better?
The question you came here for, which is better: The VW Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport? Unfortunately, we feel this is rather subjective. We can’t really say which one is better because we know that every consumer has different lifestyles and vehicle needs. If you find yourself needing three rows of seats, the Atlas is best. If you don’t, then the Atlas Cross Sport is for you. Since the only differences between the two are seating capacity and cargo space, it makes this decision a little easier. Both have the same engine specs. They both have a 5-star safety rating. Both have similar interiors depending on what trim you go with. Both have very similar prices. So, which one fits you best?
Of course, we always advise going to a local VW dealership or used lot to take both for a test drive to get a first-hand experience. We can’t say how many times our decisions have changed after getting behind the wheel of a car.
VW Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport Conclusion
In conclusion, we hope the information provided above has assisted you in your purchasing decision. In short, the only big differences between the VW Atlas vs Atlas Cross Sport are seating capacity and cargo space. If you are a consumer that needs 7 seats, then go with the Atlas. If you could do with 5 seats, and like a sportier SUV, then go with the Atlas Cross Sport. Any input from first-hand consumers would be much appreciated in the comments below. This will assist future readers in choosing which is better for them.