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2020 Atlas Cross Sport Premium R-Line 4 Motion
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Owned mine for two weeks. Love it so far. Lots of people complain on here. I still think they’re good cars.
I’ve owned a lot of vw’s and Audis tho so I’m used to the little issues and things people complain about. Still worth it to me.

Good luck!


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We have a 2018 SE w/ tech 2.0t. We love the vehicle. It checked off a lot of boxes. There are a couple things that bug me though. The user settings per key never worked right. Often we have issues with conflicts between users and the infotainment system just goes to default mode. Minor but frustrating at times. We decided to tune the 2.0 turbo and that was the best decision. Plenty of get up and go for a large SUV. Decent gas mileage from such a large vehicle. The features, fit, and finish for the price point sold us. It drives so much better than the competition.
 

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2019 SEL Premium. Bought it with 4k miles ago about a month ago and now at 9k. Love the car so much. Only issue I had was no A/C freon in the system which was fixed under the warranty the second day of owning the car and I have 360 camera misalignment issue that is being taken care of under the warranty. All cars have issues but I get it and I am fine with it. We are all different and some of us are more sensitive when it comes to some details. Some people don't understand the nature of some car's behaviors and these can quickly become a big deal on the forums. I love my Atlas and will not hesitate to buy one again or recommend one. I love the technology, I love the way it drives, I love the way the engine sounds I love the smell of leather and I love the space! It is not the greatest on gas and everyone knows it. I knew it before buying it so I have no right to complain now and I will not. There are a lot other things that make up for bad gas millage. You get a lot of car for the price.
 
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Sounds like a poor front collision repair :oops:
What do you mean? Car had no collision. There has been quite a few owners that they got their Atlas brand new with no freon in their A/C system and looks like my car was one of them too because they said it was empty.
 

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What do you mean? Car had no collision. There has been quite a few owners that they got their Atlas brand new with no freon in their A/C system and looks like my car was one of them too because they said it was empty.
ADAS calibration issues are strongly correlated with collision damage, and AC problems can be as well - that’s what I’m saying 🤷‍♂️
 

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I agree, but that is not the only reason to have these issues.
 

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Old timer here. Bought ours in the fall of 2017. I never knew what a love/hate relationship was until owning the Atlas.
 

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So...considering a 2021 Atlas. Do you like your Atlas? Any issues?
What are your thoughts?? TIA
I've owned mine for 6 days. Prior to 6 days ago I don't remember hearing of nor seeing an Atlas. Went to VW dealership to just browse a used car in their lot - not even seriously looking to buy anything. As my wife and I were making our way to the used car section we had to walk thru the new car lot to get there. Clever, eh? Well, it worked. Had to walk by about 7 Atlas' to get there. At every encounter I had to stop and study each one. I was like, wow, VW's got some talented designers working for them.

The fact that I got mine at $6k under sticker sure sweetened the deal too. This one is their V6 x-sport SE 4M and just about smack dab in the middle of their version line up. Except for a 2000 M5 with DINAN options :) I've never owned a German vehicle. But always loved the old Bugs.

6-Day Summation
Styling - 8.5 out of 10, maybe a 9/10 if I had the 21" wheels. Very nice lines, very wide stance, and it just sits well. Seems to have just the right amount of everything I prefer to have in an SUV. Not too much, not too little. Just right? Maybe.

Performance - 7.5/10
- Straightlight. IMO, it has just enough git-up and go. It's brand new so I'm not pushing things at least until I've got a few k miles of break-in. Nothing much to write home about regarding straight line performance. But it's enough to put a little smile on my face. Oh, I notice it (or me) seems to wander a bit within its lane. I hope it's just me so I can learn from it. It has rather effortless steering so it could be just me getting used to differences.

- Handling - Not so sure yet. I've only got 200 miles on it with a few short trips outta town. So far I think it pretty good as it it seems like a variable handling that can almost seem a bit sloppy or sloushy but when stressed firms right up. For example. I'm taking some tight 2 lane backroads in the mountains at higher speeds and it's handling S curves up and down hills rather nicely. Hopefully I'll have a better idea after break-in.

Egonomics / Interfaces / Options - Jury's still out. I really like what I see but I now realize I must change my mindset. Coming from a fully loaded 2013 Ford Explorer Limited, I now have certain expectations on how to get things done. And with the Atlas I'm missing a few options. It's gonna' take some time for me. But still enjoying it. Cons? The driver's seat is a bit sloppy in handling my 6'2" 220 frame. I would prefer my seat engage my frame a bit more. It's not too bad but it seems my body is swaying in the seat a bit too much. A bit sloppy here but not the end of the world.

Volkswagen Customer Service / Warranties, etc - Seems pretty top flight in what they offer thus far.

Music Sound Quality - 3 / 10 - Just the basic units here that I think comes with all but top-of-the-line Atlas'. Oh, well.

To sum it all up in my 6 short days, I think the Atlas an excellent find. It sits and drives if not well, at least well enough. Hat's off to the VW design team 'cuz there are some ugly lookin' vehicles out there. If the Atlas doesn't give me issues, it may be one of my better decisions in recent years. :)
 

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2018 Launch Edition
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I've got a Launch Edition 2018 with a VIN less than 1000 and have had it since June of 2017. I love the car when it's working. I'm at 80,000 miles and most of those miles are highway miles. My prayer is that now that I'm beyond the warranty, that all the bugs are out of it. I've had the entire coolant system replaced in the vehicle (radiator, reservoir, hoses, etc.) , A window motor unit replaced, A/C issues fixed, Issues with the sunroof fixed, and quite a few others issues. . . honestly more than I can remember.

With all these issues, I've considering trading it in, but I have to say, again, when it's working, we love it. I have a family of 5, we slap a big roof box on the top and road trip across 1200 miles at a time, multiple times a year to grandma's house. It is very comfortable, it has lots of room to keep the wife and kids happy, and, in my opinion, looks nice. We keep the third row up so the kids can spread out, hence the need for the roof box. For road-tripping, I can't imagine a more comfortable experience. It loads up well and with its size and length, cruises very well.


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We love ours, 2019 SEL-P bought Nov 2019. We haul a camper, bikes, roof box, etc and have only loved it for the entirety of the 30k miles we have on it. Comfortable on long trips, capable in bad weather, easy to see out of, etc. would buy it again in a heartbeat before anything else in its price range.


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I truly hate this car. It's our second Atlas because wife likes simple cars.
To me it's the most generic, undermotorized, cheap plastic gondola one can imagine. We had tons of problems with the 2018 (SEL) model. With the 2021 model (SEL AWD) interior trim come off after only 8 months and 3,000 miles. Infotainment system stops working with out reason, Safety features (lane assist, traffic sign recognition, back camera) stop working randomly.
Everything is designed to be as low-cost as possible. E.g., why put in TPSs into all tires and then saving pennies by deciding not to indicate which tire's pressure is low?
8 months into the second Atlas my wife agrees that her next car is a real car. Stay away from it.
 

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I truly hate this car. It's our second Atlas because wife likes simple cars.
To me it's the most generic, undermotorized, cheap plastic gondola one can imagine. We had tons of problems with the 2018 (SEL) model. With the 2021 model (SEL AWD) interior trim come off after only 8 months and 3,000 miles. Infotainment system stops working with out reason, Safety features (lane assist, traffic sign recognition, back camera) stop working randomly.
Everything is designed to be as low-cost as possible. E.g., why put in TPSs into all tires and then saving pennies by deciding not to indicate which tire's pressure is low?
8 months into the second Atlas my wife agrees that her next car is a real car. Stay away from it.
While I echo your comments on the cheapness and that the safety features as well as infotainment is slow to turn on and sometimes flaky from time to time, the tire pressure monitor does tell you which tire is low. I just picked up a nail in my front passenger side tire this past Saturday and it indicated the correct tire that was losing air. This is in 2021.5 SEL R Line AWD, should be the same for you unless it was a .5 model year upgrade.

To the OP, there are other better options but it all depends on what you want out of your car. Even though the Korean twins are better in many ways and if it were my car and not my wife's I would probably have been in one of them, we still preferred the look of the Atlas, the overall interior space and the simplicity of the interior design. You can get the Atlas in real colors vs the gray tones of many others, we love our green r-line with brown interior. It feels more truck like and has been a good vehicle for us even if it has only gone 2k miles in 3+ months since she isn't in the office yet. I get to contrast that with the same infotainment and safety features in my new Sonata N Line (same or similar as in the Palisade I would have went for) and the radio is on in a second or two (Atlas takes seemingly forever, 10-20 seconds), Nav map (w/free traffic) or AA up in seconds when plugged in (Atlas takes 10-60 seconds - long enough to make me pause at the end of my street if trying to decide which way to go due to traffic), safety features that always work vs the Atlas that sometimes has hiccups.
There are many other things to either praise or nit-pick but in the end we are happy with it and it has already proven to be an excellent people and gear hauler as well has allowed me to fit boxier / slightly larger items than the Enclave we had before it. We were going down the path of picking a car based on test results (well, I was anyway) and test drives but I could tell that the style of the Atlas was what my wife wanted, instant mood change when she drove it, she loved it, and that is what matters most. In the end, as long as the size inside and out works for you, the competition is really tight on 3 row family SUVs and they are all splitting hairs at being better or worse than the others, there really are no horrible options on the market. And don't let MSRP fool you, no one would buy an Atlas at full price, it isn't as competitive vs other vehicles at full price but the Koreans are still selling close to sticker and the VW will be less when all said and done.
 

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This is in 2021.5 SEL R Line AWD, should be the same for you unless it was a .5 model year upgrade.
Clearly not present in our SEL. It's either a .5 thing or an R-line feature.
The size of the Atlas is indeed a plus. The only thing that is sad about the size is that they made just small enough to not fit a full sheet of plywood.

My disappointment comes from having a T-reg before the Atlas. They are worlds apart.

As for the Koreans: When we looked at them the dealers asked several thousand $ over MSRP (LA Area 08/20). I just laughed and left the lot.
 

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I truly hate this car. It's our second Atlas because wife likes simple cars.
To me it's the most generic, undermotorized, cheap plastic gondola one can imagine. We had tons of problems with the 2018 (SEL) model. With the 2021 model (SEL AWD) interior trim come off after only 8 months and 3,000 miles. Infotainment system stops working with out reason, Safety features (lane assist, traffic sign recognition, back camera) stop working randomly.
Everything is designed to be as low-cost as possible. E.g., why put in TPSs into all tires and then saving pennies by deciding not to indicate which tire's pressure is low?
8 months into the second Atlas my wife agrees that her next car is a real car. Stay away from it.
What vehicle do you like as a "real car" in the under $45k 3 row SUV segment?

I actually love the engine, sounds good, gets pretty decent MPG for its size, plenty of power compared to its competitors in its price point. Plastic interior bits make cleaning up after pets and kids super easy. I have experienced the lane/traffic system randomly being turned off when starting the vehicle, but if I go to vehicle settings and click the box it turns back on.

As far as TPMS, you should be checking the pressure of your tires regularly no matter what the dash says.
 

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2018 Platinum Gray Sportwagen S / 2020 Pure Gray Atlas Cross Sport SEL-P
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Clearly not present in our SEL. It's either a .5 thing or an R-line feature.
The size of the Atlas is indeed a plus. The only thing that is sad about the size is that they made just small enough to not fit a full sheet of plywood.

My disappointment comes from having a T-reg before the Atlas. They are worlds apart.

As for the Koreans: When we looked at them the dealers asked several thousand $ over MSRP (LA Area 08/20). I just laughed and left the lot.
Don’t waste your time with Hyundai Kia. They have real engine failure problems. They’ve acknowledged them for some model years but they effect many more than they say. Case in point, my 2012 Veloster that spun a rod bearing at 130k well cared for miles. Not covered! That was a fun $5500 engine replacement! A guy got fired for making a tiktok at his dealership showing how many engines were waiting to go into customer cars. It was insane, I will never trust them again.

That being said I’ve owned a lot of cars and I don’t think I’ve ever been as happy owning any of the others as I am with our 2018 Sportwagen and our new 2020 Cross Sport SEL-P in Pure Gray. We’ve only had the Atlas a few months and got a killer deal with it being a leftover 2020 but it’s a late year build and I love it.

We used to own a 2006 Lexus GX and that was a big vehicle but I feel like I could fit two GX interiors inside this Atlas. The backseat room is just massive. I know that comes from being a Crossover vs a body on frame truck but I’ll take it.

I honestly don’t think there is a better deal in vehicles than VWs offerings. They feel and drive nice, you can get 5-7k off msrp just about any day. Engines are powerful and mostly reliable and efficient. I think they’re the best bang for the buck going right now.


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What vehicle do you like as a "real car" in the under $45k 3 row SUV segment?

As far as TPMS, you should be checking the pressure of your tires regularly no matter what the dash says.
My wife does not really decide on a car based on the sticker price. E.g., she wouldn't even test drive a Q7 because the center console cup holder was too small and there were too many buttons. But I'm hoping that they bring back the T-Reg to the USA. If not it will be a Cayenne or Q7.
The Atlas is by no means a German car. It's banged together in the South with serious QA issues. When we drove it off the lot the arm rest of one of the captain seats fell off. Or just look at the tolerances for panel alignment. That's down there in Tesla territory (can't get much worse).

As for tire pressure: My daily driver is 11 years old and shows the exact tire pressure for every tire in the cluster. That is probably not more then a few lines of code VW did save pennies on.
It's 2021 and I'm supposed to manually check tire pressures with TPSs installed? Seriously?
It's the lite things that annoy me. E.g., the saved another ~$0.10 by omitting the trip odometer reset button with the digital cluster. Instead you have to navigate through submenus to find it. How impractical is that?

BTW: Does anyone know how to reset the oil change reminder with the digital cluster? The dealer left it counting down from production date and not from purchasing date.
 
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