2018 Volkswagen Atlas vs 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan

Did Volkswagen go from having no SUVs in its lineup to having two? Well, not exactly. The automaker had two crossovers, but the shorter wheelbase Tiguan wasn’t competitive for the American market. We enjoy stretching our legs too much. Now the Tiguan has grown in length and the Atlas has entered the lineup to give VW fans two options for their families. But what are the key differences? Comparing the 2018 Volkswagen Atlas vs 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan, you’ll find that the Atlas is a roomier option with more powerful engine options, but a higher price. Whether or not it is worth the extra cost depends on your needs and lifestyle.

2018 Volkswagen Atlas


2018 Volkswagen Tiguan

$30,750 Base MSRP $24,595
22 city/26 hwy (4-cylinder) Fuel Economy 22 city/27 hwy
7 passengers Seating 5-7 passengers
235hp/258 lb-ft of torque Base Performance 184hp/221 lb-ft of torque

Size and engine differences

Though the fuel economy ratings are similar for the 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engines, you’ll note that the Atlas has a much more powerful engine. While the Tiguan only offers this 4-cylinder, the Atlas has a 3.6-liter V6 upgrade. This V6 is the standard for every trim except for the base S trim, which has the option between the V6 or the 4-cylinder. For this reason, it’s more common to find. Fuel economy in V6-equipped Atlas models drops to 18 city and 25 highway, which is still respectably similar to the 4-cylinder engine. Performance ratings jump to 276 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque, which should be a noticeable improvement for the Atlas.

Performance is something you typically need to see to believe, much like interior space. You’ll notice that the 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan is listed as offering seating for five or seven passengers. All front-wheel drive models have seating for seven, while Tiguan options with the 4Motion AWD system have standard seating for five and available third-row seating as a package. The 2018 Volkswagen Atlas has standard seating for seven. Comparing the seven-seat Tiguan to the Atlas, you’ll see that the Tiguan isn’t quite as roomy. It has 123.9 cubic feet of passenger volume and 65.7 cubic feet of cargo volume with the rear seats folded flat. The Atlas has 153.7 cubic feet of passenger volume and 96.8 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats folded flat. With rear seats upright, the Tiguan has 12 cubic feet compared to 20.6 in the Atlas.

Clearly, the Atlas is roomier and more powerful, without losing much in terms of efficiency. So why might you choose the Tiguan? Pricing is an obvious reason, but lifestyle also plays a factor. For those who are looking for a crossover to support their active lifestyle, the compact model is affordable and practical. Stop by Gorman McCracken Volkswagen to see which one is a match for you.