Scout to Return in 2026 as VW's EV Off-Road Brand

Scout to Return in 2026 as VW’s EV Off-Road Brand

  • Volkswagen will join the electric off-road market by creating a new company with the long defunct Scout nameplate, once used by International Harvester.
  • The Scout brand will begin production in 2026, with an electric pickup truck and SUV duo.
  • Prototypes will be revealed next year, and the vehicles will be based on a new platform and designed specifically for the U.S. market.

    Volkswagen is entering the electric off-roader scene, and in doing so will revive a legendary nameplate: the Scout. Made famous by truck and tractor maker International Harvester in the 1960s and 1970s, the Scout moniker will return on an electric SUV and pickup truck designed for the American market, with production planned for 2026.

    1978 international scout ii

    The 1978 International Scout II family.


    The Scout name will be bestowed upon a new company under the Volkswagen Group umbrella, which will be established this year with the first prototypes unveiled in 2023. Along with the announcement, Volkswagen provided sketches of a rugged, boxy SUV and pickup truck duo, with an upturned window line that recalls the rear glass from the ‘60s original. VW says the new Scouts will be based on a new EV platform, and more details will presumably arrive next year when the sketches come to life.

    The return of the Scout name had been rumored recently in a report from the Wall Street Journal, which hints at other details of the Scout’s rebirth. According to the report, VW is aiming to ultimately end up selling 250,000 Scout-branded vehicles per year in America. Volkswagen came by the Scout moniker when its Traton truck division took control of Navistar International, the descendant of International Harvester, in 2020.

    The report also suggested that the Scout brand will have its own factories and that these are likely to be in the United States. A separate listing on a stock exchange for the new company is also rumored. By the time the Scout duo arrive, the electric off-roader space will be fairly crowded, with the current players—the GMC Hummer EV and Rivian R1T—set to be joined by an electric Jeep Wrangler and others.

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