Holy Hell VW’s Showing a Pickup Concept

Volkswagen talks a big game about how versatile its MQB platform is and now they’re trying to prove it by showing off a pickup truck. The Atlas Tanoak concept shows what an MQB-based Atlas family pickup truck might look like.

 With more and more sales attributable to VW’s SUVs (more than 50% in February, in fact) Volkswagen is eager to spin them off however they can.

And although VW has clearly stated that there are no plans to produce the Tanoak, the pickup market is huge in America and they’re using the kind of language they did when they introduced the I.D. Buzz concept, which is now going into production.

Powered by the same 276 hp VR6 engine that powers the Atlas, the Tanoak is a crew cab pickup with space for five and a five and a third foot bed.

Riding on 20-inch rims shod in 275/55 tires, the Tanoak uses VW’s 4Motion all wheel drive system. It also rides a full two-inches higher than the Atlas, for all your off-roading ambitions. Mind you, that does make for a 0-60 time on the slow side of 8 seconds, but it isn’t really about pace.

Although it’s largely the same as the Atlas from the B-pillar forward, the Tanoak does have a special grille all its own. As the Atlas Cross Sport features a pouting grille to highlight its alleged sportiness, the Tanoak features big light elements to highlight the Tanoak’s ruggedness.

It also features a perhaps ill-advised plastic bumper element that bears the Atlas name. Although it’s hardly the first, it might cashing checks that it can’t cash when considered against the dinosaurs in the segment.