Priority number one is to strengthen Volkswagen’s SUV lineup in North America.
Scout Motors’s EV platform won’t be used for an electric Volkswagen pickup truck
Volkswagen USA’s new CEO is a big fan of the Tarok concept
Everything points to the fact that the long-awaited Volkswagen pickup truck won’t be coming to North America, at least not anytime soon, according to the German brand’s top man, Thomas Schäfer, who revealed at a roundtable discussion during the Los Angeles Auto Show that Volkswagen won’t be bringing a pickup truck to North America in the short or medium term.
Volkswagen’s North American dealers have been asking their parent company for a pickup truck for several decades now. The last one in the running was based on a Volkswagen Rabbit platform from the 1980s, which limited its capabilities.
So, the new head of operations for Volkswagen U.S., Pablo Di Si, who just took office three months ago, will have his work cut out for him to convince his new German-based boss. The latter said that the Volkswagen lineup does not include it. “For now, we have a clear lineup all the way through the second half of the decade. But again, in the U.S. market, if you don’t play in certain segments, you have to stay in a certain market share area. But the question of [Volkswagen’s new Rugged SUV platform] is not our priority at the moment.”
In other words, the platform that will serve as the base for the first two models of the new electric Scout division – which is owned by Volkswagen – will not be shared with the German brand.
Schäfer’s statement is certainly not good news for Volkswagen dealership owners in the U.S. and Canada who were probably hoping that this new Scout effort on electric side would carry over to the Volkswagen side.
Even former Volkswagen America’s President and CEO and now head of Scout Motors, Scott Keogh had held out a glimmer of hope that this platform designed for a rugged, electric vehicle could be reused elsewhere in the Volkswagen empire, but all indications are that it won’t happen anytime soon.
The new head of Volkswagen U.S. also said that his number one priority right now is to strengthen Volkswagen’s SUV lineup in North America. The pickup truck business will be addressed at the appropriate time.
Incidentally, Di Si, who headed the Latin American arm before moving north of the equator, is a big fan of the Tarok pickup truck unveiled at the 2019 New York Auto Show. Perhaps the friendly unibody truck could see the light of day if the opportunity is right, but at the time of writing, it’s all speculation.