There are three kinds of people that come to Death Valley in the summer.
The Hardy, the stupid and the hot weather testers and I guess I'm all three cuz I'm here and it's about 123 degrees and I am gonna see how this upcoming Atlas cross sport does in these extreme temperatures.
Out here in Death Valley Volkswagen is looking at a few key components beyond just engine oil and coolant temperatures.
The company is also testing to make sure that the battery and the brake lines can take this scorching heat.
The exhaust system and the firewall are both wired up to monitor temperatures here in Death Valley, and even things like bearings and the suspension components themselves are monitored to make sure that they can withstand the heat.
Like its big brother The Atlas, The Atlas Cross Sport can tow 5,000 pounds but it's going to be available with a tow package as well.
That's going to get you an upgraded radiator and alternator, a trailer control module and a different stability control setup.
Out here in Death Valley.
We're talking about 3500 pounds so we've got a bit of room to spare, but the prototype handles the airstream easily pulling the hills quickly with nearly a hair out of place.
So yes, Volkswagen is bringing a another midsize crossover to the market.
But look, it's smart right because they are selling like hotcakes.
Now this Atlas cross board it's got the same power train as the Atlas you can get a small two liter four cylinder engine Which is good for 235 horsepower and 258 pound feet of torque.
But this guy here is the V6 with 276 horsepower and 266 pound feet of torque.
It's a little bit smaller overall than the Atlas It's about 5.7 inches smaller in length but it does have the same wheelbase.
It feels just a little bit quicker than the larger Atlas.
It's made it to an eight speed automatic transmission and you can get all wheel drive on both the smaller and the larger.
Which is pretty cool.
This v six is options up to tow 5000 pounds and I gotta say, driving through here and all of this heat up hill from sea level up to 4000 feet.
That temperature gauge did not move once.
So this has just been a prototype drive but I got to tell you this is a Spry little mid sized crossover and I can't wait to spend some more time in it.
We've got no word on pricing, but we do know that the 2020 Atlas cross court will arrive and dealerships in the first part of 2020.