The 2020 Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport is how America likes its hatchbacks

They say America doesn’t like the hatchback, but what is a VW Atlas Cross Sport but a VW hatchback at 1.16 magnification? [credit:
Jonathan Gitlin ]

In February, back before the coronavirus came for our trade shows, I lamented the current desire among the car-buying public for ever more massive SUVs. By month’s end, I found myself behind the wheel of one—normally something we task Managing Editor Bangeman with, for he likes his vehicles on the larger side. It’s Volkswagen’s new Atlas Cross Sport, a five-seater that is mechanically identical to the three-row Atlas, though it sports a more rakish look above the belt line. It proved to be quite a thought-provoking drive, not for any clever new technology or radically different driving experience but because of what it reveals about Americans and their attitudes toward cars—some of which you may find unpalatable.
Actually, Americans do like hatchbacks
A couple of years ago, I called the VW Jetta a “quintessentially American Volkswagen.” I’d like to retract that old headline now, because although the Jetta was responsible for much of VW’s growth in pre-dieselgate times, I was completely off-base. It’s true, adding a trunk to the globally popular Golf hatchback was the missing step to selling smaller cars in the United States. But contrary to popular belief, Americans don’t dislike the hatchback per-se—they just don’t want ’em small. But if you were to take that small hatchback and subject it to a growth ray or whatever the CAD tool equivalent is, it turns out they fly off the shelves. VW’s sales have been up for the past three years, and that’s all down to two models, the Tiguan and the Atlas, which made up 53 percent of its sales in 2019.
So, the Atlas Cross Sport (and the Atlas before it) is a much truer example of an American people’s wagon.Read 12 remaining paragraphs | Comments
Source: Car news one

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