In May of 2022, the Volkswagen Group announced plans to revive the Scout brand. The intention was to launch a purely electric pickup truck and an SUV in 2026. Later in July, Scott Keogh was appointed CEO, and in March 2023, VW announced it would build a new $2-billion assembly plant in Blythewood, South Carolina for the two Scout models.
Fast forward to present day and a new report indicates VW has decided to ship out development of the two models. According to Austrian newspaper Kleine Zeitung, Magna Steyr is engineering the electric SUV and truck in exchange for the princely sum of €450 million. At current exchange rates, that works out to about $492.7 million. It;s believed to be the most significant development contract ever given to Magna Steyr.
Scout Electric SUV Rendering
Magna is one of the biggest contract manufacturers in the world as it has built 31 different models, amounting to more than four million cars. Chief among them is the Mercedes-Benz G-Class, which the company has been assembling since the late 1970s. but the company also makes the Toyota Supra / BMW Z4, Jaguar's E-Pace and I-Pace, along with the new Fisker Ocean.
Kleine Zeitung says Magna is already working on the pair of EVs for Scout Motors by assigning duties to engineers in Graz and the United States. When contacted by Automotive News Europe, a spokesperson for Magna in Europe declined to provide a statement about the Austrian newspaper's report published on November 23.
The tie-up doesn't come as a big surprise considering Automobilwoche wrote a year ago how VW could outsource production to Magna (or to Foxconn). VW ultimately decided to go solo in terms of assembly but it looks as though Magna is lending them a helping hand with development. Production of the two new models is slated to commence by late 2026 at the South Carolina plant where annual capacity will exceed 200,000 units.
Spanning 1,100 acres, the future factory will be positioned within a larger site covering approximately 1,600 acres where more than 4,000 permanent jobs will be created. The vehicles will ride on a dedicated EV platform set to deliver "credible capability and off-road prowess" according to a statement made a while ago by Scout Motors.