Test Driving the 2018 Volkswagen Atlas in Montreal

Today I took a test on the most attractive seven-seat I've seen in the last couple of years: the 2018 Volkswagen Atlas. This masterpiece of a vehicle with a "German" signature was definitely amazing, and in the following article, I will describe why. If you have a chance to give it a try, go and do it. Chances are you have probably seen the "Mustard' color on the ads that have been marketed with the model, but I'm more than shocked by the amount of Altas on the streets with only two years since the model was released to the market and even compared to the Touareg.

As I won't jump into many details about the features, I will mention the best parts of the experience and add some videos that explain way better (with a marketing approach) the characteristics of the new Atlas.

Interior Space for a 7 Seater...

The Atlas is huge. That's it. The 3rd row was one of the first things I tried and, as same as any other seven seats SUV, a 6 feet guy like me isn't really comfortable, but way better than my tests on the Armada and the Explorer. The interior space is pretty well distributed, and there is even a good space when all rows are deployed. The best-in-class I've seen so far.

Volkswagen Atlas: German Engineering for North America from the Ground Up

The Atlas comes in 4 models: Trendline, Comfortline, Highline & Execline. For specific details regarding the difference between the trims, please refer to the official Atlas Page of Volkswagen in Canada.  

The one I tested was the Highline. The Execline is really hard to find at a dealer as these come in from custom orders, so the Highline is the one you will see most of the cases when going to the dealers.

When you drive a German car, you notice the difference. How robust the vehicle is, how it behaves during turns, how the engine pulls the entire vehicle forward in a nice and smooth acceleration. German Engineering doing its things again... as usual. I got to say that I was looking to intentionally find the difference between the CVT transmission from Nissan, Honda and Toyota vehicles and I was impressed with the Tiptronic® 4MOTION from the Atlas. It comes with 8 speed automatic, and I couldn't clearly identify the gear switches so easy. I had to seriously pay attention.

Volkswagen Atlas Montreal: Other Side

That kind of things you experience when driving a German car... putting apart all the additional technology that is common among all different manufacturers.

I Still Want to Try the Executive Edition

Today, if you request an Executive Edition, you will probably get it by January-February 2018. That is why, even after testing the Highline, there are some final details I would like to experience to provide a full review of the Altas, but so far, it is good enough to be on my "personal" top 7-seat SUV list.

Automatic Park Assists

Digital Dashboard

Bird's-eye View

If you are in Montreal Area, I would suggest you contact Mr. Felix Régol from Volkswagen Popular, located in the center of Montreal island. There is where I took the test drive, in the "pot-hole" battlegrounds of the Plateau-Mont-Royal, the best place in Canada to experience how a vehicle behaves. The only missing part, as usual, the highway, but what car does not perform well on the nicely polished highway asphalt.

Anywhere else in Canada, feel free to explore the full list of featured Volkswagen dealers to find the nearest to your place.

I Just Love the Atlas

The Atlas was designed for North America. Space, road, adventure, snow... It is a product that gathers the best of many winning players in the automotive market and raises as a new flagship for Volkswagen in the U.S and Canada.

Go and give it a try. If you are a Tiguan lover, or even deciding between the alternatives like Ford Explorer, Nissan Armada, Honda Pilot... give it a shot, you won't regret it.

About the author

Jorge Diaz is a passionate car lover, winter driver & Software Engineer. For the last 10 years, he has built Online Solutions used by more than 5,000 companies across the globe. He founded LeaseCosts in 2016 with the purpose of simplifying and helping Canadians to better understand the complex market of car leasing in Canada. You can connect with him at Leantrepreneurship.com.

Jorge is also the author of Car Leasing Done Right: A Canadian Guide for Understanding & Optimizing Vehicle Leasing Costs, released on Nov. 5th, 2021. It is available at Amazon.ca