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The Atlas Cross Sport has standard Automatic Post-Collision Braking System, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Passport doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.
When descending a steep, off-road slope, the Atlas Cross Sport 4Motion’s standard Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The Passport doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.
The Atlas Cross Sport SEL Premium has a standard Overhead View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Passport only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.
Both the Atlas Cross Sport and the Passport have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive and lane departure warning systems.
The Atlas Cross Sport comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Passport’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.
The Atlas Cross Sport’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the Passport’s (7 vs. 5 years).
Volkswagen pays for scheduled maintenance on the Atlas Cross Sport for 2 years and 20,000 miles. Volkswagen will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Honda doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Passport.
The Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport’s engines use a cast iron block for durability, while the Passport’s engine uses an aluminum block. Aluminum engine blocks are much more prone to warp and crack at high temperatures than cast iron.
A hardened steel chain, with no maintenance needs, drives the camshafts in the Atlas Cross Sport’s engine. A rubber cam drive belt that needs periodic replacement drives the Passport’s camshafts. If the Passport’s belt breaks, the engine could be severely damaged when the pistons hit the opened valves.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Volkswagen vehicles are more reliable than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Volkswagen 12th in reliability, above the industry average. With 15 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 16th.
For better stopping power the Atlas Cross Sport’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Passport:
Atlas Cross Sport
The Atlas Cross Sport’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Passport are solid, not vented.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Atlas Cross Sport R-Line has standard 21-inch wheels. The Passport’s largest wheels are only 20-inches.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Atlas Cross Sport’s wheelbase is 6.4 inches longer than on the Passport (117.3 inches vs. 110.9 inches).
The Atlas Cross Sport has .7 inches more front legroom and .8 inches more rear legroom than the Passport.
The Atlas Cross Sport uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Passport uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.
The Atlas Cross Sport’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Passport’s parking brake has to released manually.
The power windows standard on both the Atlas Cross Sport and the Passport have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Atlas Cross Sport is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Passport prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.
The Atlas Cross Sport’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Passport’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.
The Atlas Cross Sport’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Passport’s standard intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.
Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the Atlas Cross Sport SEL to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Passport doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.
To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the Atlas Cross Sport offers optional cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Passport doesn’t offer cornering lights. The Atlas Cross Sport SEL also has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle.
The Atlas Cross Sport’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Honda only offers heated mirrors on the Passport EX-L/Touring/Elite.
The Atlas Cross Sport’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Passport’s power mirror controls are on the dash where they are possibly hidden by the steering wheel and are awkward to manipulate.
The Atlas Cross Sport SEL Premium’s Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Passport doesn’t offer an automated parking system.
The Volkswagen Atlas outsold the Honda Passport by over two to one during 2019.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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