Wolkswagen’s Scout Secures $1.3 Billion Incentives for U.S. Plant

Scout Motors, a unit of Volkswagen Group, will receive $1.29 billion incentives for its $2 billion South Carolina plant for trucks and SUVs, after state governor McMaster signed legislation approving the funds. The project could also receive up to $180 million in job development tax credits based on hiring, said South Carolina Commerce Secretary Lightsey. Volkswagen announced in May last year that it would reintroduce the Scout brand in the United States, offering new electric pickup and SUVs. The company aims to eventually employ 4,000 people and produce 200,000 vehicles a year at its South Carolina plant.

Groundbreaking is planned for mid-2023 and production is projected to begin by the end of 2026.

“We looked at 74 sites in a dozen states, roughly,” Scout CEO Keogh told said. “The site was ready, the governor himself put together an EV council … to make sure his state was ready.”

Keogh said Scout wants to “act like a startup, be nimble and take advantage of this moment.” Scout, an independent U.S. company owned by Volkswagen Group, has said it is evaluating the potential for outside investment but has made no announcements.

Volkswagen has moved away from cars in the United States. SUVs now account for about 80% of U.S. sales of the group’s VW and Audi brands. VW last sold a pickup in the United States in the early 1980s.

Volkswagen first disclosed it was considering using the Scout brand name in 2021. The automaker’s Traton business acquired U.S. truck maker Navistar in 2020, which owns the name.

Monday’s event was the latest major auto announcement for South Carolina, also home to BMW’s U.S. operations and its largest plant by volume. The state also has over 500 automotive-related companies and 75,000 automotive industry employees.

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