Used 2019 Volkswagen Atlas SUV
Which Atlas does Edmunds recommend?
The trim level we recommend is called SE with Technology. While we'd love for everyone to experience the topped-out SEL Premium trim level, it is pricey and not everyone needs the creature comforts it provides. And this year Volkswagen has given the lower trim levels more standard equipment such as forward collision mitigation, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert — all excellent additions. The SE with Technology trim level also comes standard with the Atlas' impressive V6, and it's available with all-wheel drive.
Edmunds' Expert Review
- Spacious interior offers ample room for passengers in all three rows
- Great compromise between precise handling and everyday comfort
- Straightforward cabin design makes everything easy to use
- Not very quick to accelerate, even with the optional V6
- Fuel economy lags that of some competitors
- Two new trim levels debut
- Expanded availability of features for 2019
- Part of the first Atlas generation introduced for 2018
|Overall||7.8 / 10|
With the exception of a horsepower deficit, the Atlas is a pretty pleasant crossover to wheel around, especially considering its size. Effortless but direct steering, a quick-shifting transmission and confident brakes are the main components to credit for the enjoyable driving experience.
The Atlas is well-suited to long-distance trips. Ample climate system capacity and vents for all rows will keep passengers from fighting over the controls. Ride quality is good, too, even with the optional 20-inch wheels. But we found the front seats a little flat and lacking in adjustability.
Space, space, space! That's what the Atlas is all about. But it also gets high marks for its clever sliding second-row seat with good rear visibility to boot. The available Digital Cockpit interface offers a ton of functionality to go with its good looks.
If it's utility you value most in your midsize crossover, then the Atlas could rise to the top of your list. Impressive cargo-carrying capacity and easy-folding seats are strong selling points. Small-item storage isn't as clever as in other competitors, but the sliding second-row bench more than makes up for it.
The Atlas shows strong on the tech front at the SEL Premium trim level. The Digital Cockpit interface looks of Audi quality, and the advanced driver aids are some of the better-tuned systems we've experienced in this class. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto make smartphone integration a snap.
Most helpful consumer reviews
V6 SEL Premium 4MOTION 4dr SUV AWD (3.6L 6cyl 8A)
I'm 6'4" and can comfortably sit behind myself, don't know any other car or SUV where that is possible. Bought it on the spot just because of this. I've carried 8 people comfortably and loaded cargo that I couldn't believe it could swallow. Fully loaded it's every bit as good as an Audi and $20k less, so it's a bargain. Adaptive cruise is a treat, only complaint is that it has a very small gas tank. Range is only 350 miles on a full tank. Compared to a Suburban or Expedition it's a sports car. Black wheels on 20" tires look the part. Had it a year and very pleased.
Just a guy ,01/15/2020
V6 SE w/Technology R-Line 4MOTION 4dr SUV AWD (3.6L 6cyl 8A)
we have owned our 2019 Atlas SE w/Tech 4 motion v6 rline for 13 months and 35k miles. This is by far the worst auto purchase of my adult life. We purchased this over the explorer because of the 72k warranty( now 50k on 2020 models) and it is a shame we have to use it so frequently. Pros: Ride quality. it ride very smooth, good visibility, good interior layout and third row is spacious. Cons: Terrible quality and I question the longevity of this auto. We have had ours in the shop 7x in the for 12 months for the following: 1: replace both front sway bar links in suspension- before 20k miles! 2: replace rear climate control screen 3: replace seat belt buckle in middle row 4: replace push button start due to inconsistent starting 5: torque converter makes terrible loud grinding noise in low gears. VW acknowledges its, has no idea what it is , has other complaints, but deflects it as "normal" 6: My atlas has been in the shop 3x for coolant issues. either the warning light is on or I can smell coolant when the car is on. No remedy yet so they tell me its " normal" UPDATE on this issue: the dealer just tore the entire engine apart and replaced every seal and gasket. We had warped cylinder heads and and oil leak around the filter due to coolant leaking into the cylinder heads. This would have been over $12k out of pocket with no warranty! Pretty large and ridiculous repair for an issue I was told didn’t exist for 2 months. The Service Manger mentioned he has another atlas in for the same reason and has recommended to VW Corp to look into this because he believes it is an true design issue. I'm filing a lemon law suit since all issues have started and been documented in the first year, especially the coolant issue.
V6 SEL R-Line 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 8A)
I purchased a new SEL FWD R-Line in January 2020. We loved the aesthetics of the vehicle but soon became beyond frustrated. Multiple noises necessitated 5 trips to the dealership service department: a knocking noise in the front axle (replaced sway bar connection twice), a popping sound in the steering column (replaced power steering rack), and a whining sound behind the dash (replaced a heat shield). We were orinally told the power steering rack was on indefinete backorder. I had to open a claim with VW Care to get things moving. I also purchased the Gold protection package that covered body and windshield dings. My car was in the shop for two weeks waiting on the "guy that does windows" to actually show up and make the repair...which never happened. The Gold package is a scam. We tried to get VW to buy the car back, but were denied. We ended up trading it in for a Subaru Ascent and couldn't be happier.
V6 SEL 4MOTION 4dr SUV AWD (3.6L 6cyl 8A)
I previously owned a 2001 Nissan xTerra, 2009 Hyundai Santa Fe, and 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo E. My 2019 Volkswagen Atlas absolutely tops them all. The interior is spacious. The SEL trim level is loaded. I couldn't allow myself to be seen in a current generation Honda Pilot, Toyota Highlander, or Nissan PathFinder. All are too round-looking. I prefer a more square, somewhat masculine and/or sporty appearance. That left the Ford Explorer (too expensive for comparable options), Toyota 4Runner (too rugged for my everyday highway commute), Mazda CX9 (a bit too small and underpowered), and the Volkswagen Atlas. PROs: appearance, interior room, technology, quiet handling, smooth driving/handling, more than adequate power, exterior LED lighting, value. CONs: poor MPG, would have preferred cloth or leather seats (not fake leather), a lot of hard plastic in the cabin. VW is part of the same company as Audi, and I think the perfect way to describe the Atlas is that it's the poor man's Q7...and that's meant as a compliment in all the positive interpretations of that saying. UPDATE: I am still just as thrilled today as I was 9 months ago when I bought my VW Atlas. It has proven to be quite convenient as an equipment and people hauler. I have taken her on a couple of longer road trips that included Wolf Creek Pass in Colorado and she handled them without any problems. Comfortable, quiet. Wished it had slightly better gas mileage. This is a fantastic SUV. I'm seeing more and more on the road, so it seems many other people agree.
Features & Specs
Our experts like the Atlas models:
- Blind-Spot Warning System
- Alerts you with visual and audible warnings if other vehicles are in your blind spot.
- Post-Collision Braking System
- Applies the brakes once the airbags go off to reduce the possibility of further damage or injury after initial impact.
- Lane Keeping Assist
- Sounds an alert when you drift from your lane due to inattention and can automatically steer to help out.