Volkswagen Group reviving Scout, with off-road EV SUV and utes
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Volkswagen Group plans to cash in on the off-road craze by creating an all-electric off-road SUV and Ute.
The company confirmed yesterday that it's bringing back the Scout name with two new off-road ute and SUV models. The vehicles will begin production in 2026 with prototypes making their debut next year.
Reports emerged back in 2018 about the brand creating a rugged electric SUV. Then in September 2021, VW Group of America Chief Operating Officer, Johan De Nysschen, suggested that an all-terrain vehicle with no emissions may be on the cards.
The vehicles will kick off the revived Scout brand with production beginning in 2026. Eventually, VW's Scout will be producing as many as 250,000 vehicles per year.
VW Group is describing Scout as a separate, independent company, saying the vehicles will be designed, engineered, and manufactured in the U.S.
“After Volkswagen’s successful turnaround in the U.S., we are now taking the opportunity to further strengthen our position in one of the most significant growth markets for EVs," explained VW Group CEO, Herbert Diess. "Electrification provides a historic opportunity to enter the highly attractive pick-up and R-SUV segment as a Group, underscoring our ambition to become a relevant player in the U.S. market.”
The company will invest $1 billion into the plan, but won't need to worry about the naming rights to 'Scout'. The VW Group already owns the rights to the name via Traton, it's subsidiary that puts Scania, Man, and Navistar under the same corporate umbrella.
Navistar was formed in 1986 as a direct successor to the International Harvester company, which had the rights to the "Scout" trademark. Formerly, the name had been used on the International Harvester Scout, which was an off-roader built from the 1960s to the 1980s.
Rumours around using the Scout name for an EV began last September when De Nysschen hinted the company may create something similar to a Rivian R1S SUV but "at a $40,000 price point instead of $70,000."
Reports suggest Scout will be built on a bespoke platform designed specifically for off-road use, with high ground clearance being key for the platform to be shared across both SUV and ute models.