Do you think the new Volkswagen Atlas is a suitable replacement (“spiritual successor”) to the vaunted Volkswagen Touareg?
The new Volkswagen Atlas has replaced the Touareg in the VW fleet as their largest family offering. Many Touareg fans feel that this was a bad decision by Volkswagen. Simply put, the Volkswagen Touareg had the potential for serious off-road capability. On the other hand, the new Volkswagen Atlas is a soft-roader.
We all know how capable the Touareg can be, but it had its faults. Many people avoided the stigma of buying an expensive Volkswagen in the first place. It can be monumentally expensive to service and fix. Americans’ want a proper third row seat as well. In the years that the Touareg was for sale in North America, their best year (2005) saw fewer than 20,000 units sold. In 2018, about 3,000 of the brand’s remaining new Touaregs were sold in North America.
In 2020, over 90,000 Volkswagen Atlas crossovers were sold in North America. That’s not even counting the Atlas Cross Sport – which would easily push those numbers over 100,000 units sold. Americans’ love a less expensive crossover that can hold lots of people. That’s what the Atlas does well.
The 2004 Volkswagen Touareg vs the new Volkswagen Atlas
Tommy is driving our tried and true 2004 Volkswagen Touareg, and Roman is driving a 2021 Volkswagen Atlas Basecamp. Other than the badge, these vehicles don’t share much. Roman takes us through the Atlas and shows what features it has. Tommy gives us a tour of the Touareg, and gives his opinion as well.
All in all, we know how a lot of this will boil down, but it is a worthy conversation to have. Rather than build a budget-friendly version of the Touareg (which is still being sold – overseas) we get a totally different vehicle. The Volkswagen Atlas, and the Atlas Cross Sport, were built specifically for this market. They go up against Honda and Toyota, along with Nissan in terms of market-share.
Check out this video, and tell us which one you’re rooting for!