Listen to this article

The VW Group is dead set on reviving the Scout brand with an electric SUV and pickup coming in the latter half of the decade. Meanwhile, the core brand is toying around with the idea of launching its own rugged vehicle without a combustion engine. VW Commercial Vehicles CEO Carsten Intra spoke with Autocar at the second-generation Amarok's launch in South Africa about the prospects of a VW-badged electric SUV with a ladder-frame chassis.

When asked about a body-on-frame electric SUV, Intra said VW and Ford are analyzing the T6 platform used for the Ranger and Amarok to see whether it would be a good fit for an EV application: "We're looking at it together with Ford. It's still on the agenda." Autocar speculates such a model would be molded after the ID Ruggdzz, a conceptual all-terrain electric SUV that was never unveiled to the public but some members of the media had the opportunity to see it back in 2019.

2023 Volkswagen Amarok

While the ID Ruggdzz was based on the VW Group's MEB platform, a namesake production vehicle would be underpinned by the aforementioned T6 architecture also used by the Blue Oval for its seven-seat Everest SUV. The folks from Wolfsburg originally intended to have the MEB-based ID Ruggdzz on sale by 2030, but the vehicle was put on the backburner towards the end of 2020 after software bugs negatively impacted the ID.3's market launch. At that moment, plans to sell the ID Buggy were also shelved.

Should VW approve the rugged electric SUV for production, it would need a battery pack with a minimum capacity of 110 kWh, according to company officials cited by Autocar. Anything below would not be enough to deliver the range and towing capacity a customer would expect from an SUV. One major change compared to the combustion-engined Amarok and Ranger would be replacing the leaf spring rear suspension with a multi-link setup.

Petr Sulc, a senior member of VW’s global product management team, told Australian magazine WhichCar in early December 2022 an electric Amarok-based SUV would not clash with the Scout. The former would have global appeal whereas the latter will primarily target the United States, so the risk of cannibalizing sales would be minimal.

Got a tip for us? Email: tips@motor1.com