Given the early success and the tremendous interest the public has shown in the 2021 Ford Bronco (not to mention its main competitor, the Jeep Wrangler) thus far, it doesn’t really come as a surprise that other automakers might be considering creating a Ford Bronco competitor of some sort. Interestingly, MotorTrend is reporting that one such rival might just come from Volkswagen in the form of a reborn International Harvester Scout.
Volkswagen Group of America Chief Operating Officer Johan De Nysschen revealed this possibility during a recent press event, pointing out that VW actually owns the rights to Scout name via its commercial truck division, which recently purchased Traton, which owns Navistar, which owns Scout. VW could even launch a new Scout under the International Harvester name if it so desired, as Navistar owns the rights to that name as well. Or, the brand and vehicle could both simply be marketed as “Scout.”
Volkswagen recently committed to transforming its entire lineup to electric vehicles in the coming years, so any sort of reborn Scout would be an EV, exclusively, possibly riding on a modified version of VW’s MEB platform which, ironically, will also be shared with future Ford EV models. De Nysschen said that he envisioned such a vehicle as a Rivian R1S rival, but “at a $40,000 price point instead of $70,000.” However, a hybrid Bronco is currently in the works, and Ford CEO Jim Farley recently hinted that an all-electric Bronco may be as well, meaning that this theoretical Scout would also be a direct Ford Bronco competitor.
Like the Bronco, the Scout name holds a lot of heritage, having debuted for the 1961 model year. The original 1966 Ford Bronco was also designed with the Scout in mind, so these two vehicles have quite the history together. With consumer interest in classic off-road vehicles at an all-time high, bringing back the Scout certainly makes a ton of sense, especially since VW has the naming rights and resources to do exactly that.