If you’re looking for a three-row family crossover that boasts a ton space at a reasonable price, the 2019 Volkswagen Atlas needs to be on your list. The interior is enormous, boasting enough passenger space to comfortably fit even 6-footers in all three rows. There should even be enough room for their luggage, which is rare. At the same time, the Atlas is competitively priced, well-equipped and boasts an industry-best six-year/72,000-mile warranty.
In other words, the Atlas does a great job of providing the basics for a growing family. In fact, we think it represents the best value in its most basic form. When the price rises, you’re more likely to notice its sub-par interior quality, dull design, underpowered engines and unusually springy ride. It’s certainly one to consider, but also not a class leader.
What’s new for 2019?
Every Atlas now comes standard with forward collision warning with pedestrian detection and automatic emergency braking, plus blind-spot warning, automatic LED headlights and automatic wipers. The SE now includes tri-zone climate control, while the SEL gets Volkswagen Digital Cockpit, integrated navigation and a heated steering wheel standard. There are also two new trim levels, SE R-Line and SEL R-Line, which are effectively appearance packages.
What’s the interior and in-car technology like?
Interior materials and overall ambiance are a little disappointing. There is typically austere German design and then there’s just plain – the Atlas skews toward the latter.
Not only is it easier to get into the Atlas’ third row, it is more spacious once you get back there. As we detail in the video above, someone 6-foot-3 has more than enough head- and legroom in the third row. True, you probably won’t be stuffing NBA point guards back there, but whoever is in the way back will be less cramped and just generally happier.
As for cargo capacity, as you can see in our luggage test video below, the Atlas’ 20.6 cubic-feet of space behind that raised third row allowed us to stow three carry-on roller suitcases, one mid-size check-in suitcase and an overnight bag. That people-to-luggage ratio should be pretty hard to beat in a three-row crossover.
Now, if there’s lots of space with all rows raised, it shouldn’t be surprising that trend continues when you lower them. With 96.8 cubic-feet of maximum cargo space, the Atlas is only outdone by the Traverse (barely), minivans, and those full-size SUVs.