Volkswagen Group will build a factory in the United States specifically for its new Scout brand of electric vehicles, according to a company insider speaking to Germany's Automobilwoche. "The decision to build the plant ourselves has been taken," the source told the publication.
Motor1.com reached out to Scout for confirmation of this info.
Previously, there was a rumor that Scout would partner with Foxconn or Magna Steyr to handle the production of vehicles for the brand. Although even at that time, VW Group wasn't ruling out building its own factory.
Scout's first model will be an electric pickup that will launch in 2026. An SUV EV will join the range at some point.
There are still few technical details about either of these models. They ride on a dedicated EV platform. Teasers suggest they have retro styling with strong similarities to the iteration of the International Scout from the 1970s. The brand intends to show prototypes of the vehicles before launching the production versions.
Former President and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America Scott Keogh will run the Scout brand. The current plan is for the new automaker to operate independently from its parent, including handling product development and manufacturing internally.
The Scout brand's focus is appealing to customers in the United States and eventually selling 250,000 units a year. "After Volkswagen's successful turnaround in the US, we are now taking the opportunity to further strengthen our position in one of the most significant growth markets for EVs," said former VW Group boss Herbert Diess.
Since Scout intends to operate separately from Volkswagen Group, it's not yet clear how the brand would sell vehicles in the US. Dealer groups are also asking this question. They want to know whether the new automaker would use a direct sales model or whether there would be franchises competing against existing VW showrooms.
According to a rumor, Audi might build a rugged SUV using the same underpinnings as the Scout models. This potential vehicle would also have an eye toward luxury so that it would rival vehicles like the Mercedes-Benz G-Class or high-end versions of the Land Rover Defender.
For more discussion about Scout's revival, check out this episode of Rambling About Cars:
Source: Automobilwoche via Automotive News Europe