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HomeThe MarketCould a VW-based Scout join the all-terrain tussle?

Could a VW-based Scout join the all-terrain tussle?

Volkswagen subsidiary has merger agreement with Navistar International

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OK, so it’s speculation, but it’s wonderful speculation as the MotorBiscuit website wonders, “Will the International Scout Return?”

Triggering such thoughts was the recent news that Traton has a merger agreement with Navistar International. 

So what? So Traton is a subsidiary of Volkswagen AG and will enfold Navistar into a truck-and-bus producing group that includes MAN, Scania and other brands. 

MotorBiscuit points out that, the “International” portion of Navistar International produced vehicles that included the International Scout, one of the pioneering sport utility vehicles.

Scout, Could a VW-based Scout join the all-terrain tussle?, ClassicCars.com Journal
Could the Volkswagen Atlas share its platform with a future Scout model?

Given the surge in popularity of Jeeps and resurrection of the Bronco brand by Ford, you can see how a new Scout might make for a terrific business case. 

MotorBiscuit also points out that Volkswagen already sells around 70,000 Atlas SUVs in the US, and suggests that the Atlas might made for a nice basis for producing a new Scout. The website also notes that while Volkswagen has 600 dealerships in the US, Navistar has 1,000 such outlets in the US, Canada, Mexico and Brazil, all markets that would seem ripe for a go-anywhere SUV.

As for Navistar International, it traces its history to the merger in 1902 of the McCormick Harvesting Machine Company and the Deering Harvester Company and the creation of International Harvester. In 1907, International Harvester produced the Auto Buggy and a year later the Auto Wagon, an early pickup truck.

Though focused on agricultural and commercial production, International Harvester also produced pickup trucks and delivery vehicles. For 1959 it launched the Travelall station wagon and for 1961 the Scout. 

Production of such light vehicles ended after the 1980 model year. The company was reorganized as Navistar in 1986.

Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

4 COMMENTS

  1. The pending VW/Traton Navistar group would stand only to win by entering into the game. BUT! They need to do it right. It needs to be a Rugged, Torquey, Go Anywhere Real Four wheel drive. It can’t be poorly done or mismatched. It needs an all new original platform.
    They will stay away from diesel, its being phased out. Even Navistar is making the shift to high output efficient alternate power, hydrogen. So this new group has the tech. Get it done quick and get it done right. There will be no disappointments then.

  2. Can they really* do it? Can they match the dependability w/todays sensors and electronics, not to mention aluminum parts? The Scout II was more than just a truck. The engine components were matched to help prevent internal rust. The inhibitors in the antifreeze gave their engines a lifetime/100,000 mile warranty against internal corrosion. Most new vehicles can’t last 20,000 miles without needing to change a headlight bulb, which would require 2 hours at the dealership.

    The majority of Scout lovers still rule that if it were solid axle rather than IFS they would think about it. The talks of a Scout were at the boardroom table in 2006 and nothing more was heard. The people spoke, IFS is more moving parts that cost more and the quality of parts from companies we’ve grown to trust, is just as good as “who manufactured and boxed them?”. Most people swear by m**g hubs, but You can open 10 boxes of that brand at the local parts store and find that more than one company manufactured the parts. Installing a hub or ball joint that only lasts a year is BS.

    There is no way VW would be able to do the Scout name justice… especially if they threw a price tag over $25,000 on it, expecting people to be happy w/it lasting five years/175,000 miles.I myself own, a Scout II w/over 800,000 miles on the engine. VW can’t even build a Beetle that lives that long… when after almost half a century they could be found w/500,000-1,000,000 miles on them.

    When they stop acting like grede schweinehunds and understand we are all* family, then they will be able to properly represent the Scout name, which was drawn up at the breakfast table on a napkin. IHC and it’s bairn, was family orientated, not greed-driven.

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