Volkswagen Group will establish a new brand in the United States focused on adventure vehicles. If everything goes as planned, the so-called Scout marque will become official later this year and in 2024, we will see the first prototypes of an SUV and a pickup truck. The final production models should hit the market in 2026, though it seems that not everyone is as excited about the new brand as Volkswagen is.
According to a new report by Automotive News, the National Automobile Dealers Association and several state associations reached out to Volkswagen of America asking questions about how the new brand will be marketed and retailed in the United States. More precisely, the dealers' associations wanted to have guarantees that any marketing plan won’t violate state franchise laws, according to the online publication. We reached out to Volkswagen of America but the automaker declined to comment.
When Herbert Diess, VW Group CEO, announced the new brand, he said Scout will be established as a “separate, independent company” and will operate as a standalone business entity from the main VW brand. At the time, Diess did not explain how the brand’s products – an electric SUV and truck at launch – will be distributed, though. Scott Keogh, CEO of VW of America, decided to "quickly and clearly communicate Scout's distribution plan to your dealers who have made significant investments to support VW's business model and transformation to electrification."
Meanwhile, several dealer associations wrote Keogh generally asking how the Scout brand will be retailed in the United States. According to Automotive News, the letters varied in tone but everyone wanted to know whether the new brand would sell directly to consumers or be a competing franchise with the existing VW dealer network.
Apparently, Volkswagen is not ready to provide more information regarding its retail plans for the Scout brand. However, the Wolfsburg-based automaker promised to "share more news as it becomes available," so stay tuned.