2020 Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport to Get New Tech, Will Share Some with Full VW Lineup

Charles Dryer
Photo credit: Volkswagen

From Car and Driver

  • Volkswagen's upcoming 2020 Atlas Cross Sport is getting tech features that are already common on competitors but will be added to a U.S.-market VW for the first time.
  • For Cross Sport only, there will be Traffic Jam Assist, the name for adaptive cruise control that can bring the vehicle to a full stop, while VW's Car-Net app will get several new features.
  • The Atlas Cross Sport five-seat crossover makes its official debut on October 11.

Volkswagen is introducing more ways to interact with and pilot your vehicle for the 2020 model year. While current VW models offer adaptive cruise control, the soon to be revealed Atlas Cross Sport will offer lane-keeping assist as well as what Volkswagen calls Traffic Jam Assist (TJA), which can bring the vehicle to a stop if necessary while following another vehicle in stop-and-go traffic. If the vehicle ahead of it starts moving again in less than three seconds, the Cross Sport will continue to follow on its own. If stopped for more than three seconds, the driver must press a button or the throttle to resume cruise control. Also new is Dynamic Road Sign Display, which uses a camera to read speed limits, school zones, and other signs and display them on the dash. None of this is revolutionary tech, but it is the first time it's available on a Volkswagen in the U.S. market.

Volkswagen is also updating its Car-Net remote vehicle management app for the Atlas Cross Sport and for most 2020 VWs, with only the Passat waiting for later in the model year to receive it. The Car-Net app lets owners to lock and unlock the doors, honk the horn, flash the lights, view their car's location, and start their car. The app also provides maintenance alerts, vehicle-health reports, and parking information and can send alerts if the vehicle leaves preset boundaries or exceeds a set speed, so owners can sit at home and monitor what the kids are up to. VW owners can also use Amazon's Alexa or Apple's Siri assistants to execute remote vehicle commands. Car-Net remote services are free for the first five years of ownership.

Photo credit: Volkswagen

On top of the remote access, 2020 Volkswagens will offer remote emergency assistance and wireless hotspot capability. The Safe & Secure package provides automatic crash notifications, anti-theft alerts, stolen vehicle location, information assistance, and emergency support, and it costs $99 a year. The wireless hotspot is complimentary for the first month through Verizon. However, Volkswagen is allowing customers to choose their wireless carrier; right now, only Verizon and T-Mobile are confirmed, but expect others to be offered in the future.

These technological advancements bring Volkswagen up to par with many other manufacturers, but that doesn't mean they're not useful. We're excited to see the new Atlas Cross Sport fully revealed, although our prototype drives have shown it's not much different than the regular, three-row Atlas. We'll find out on October 11.

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