Volkswagen Inks Contract With Ford for an Amarok Successor
The fledgling alliance between Ford and Volkswagen took another step towards jointly-developed products Thursday, with VW signing an initial contract for a Ranger-based replacement for VW’s aging, midsize Amarok.
Commercial vans and pickups were top of mind when the automakers officially partnered up back in January, with electric vehicles and autonomous driving serving as (potential) future collaborations. More news on that front arrived today, too.
The automakers said earlier this year that the jointly-developed pickup would arrive by 2022, timed with the release of the next-generation Ranger. Under the agreement, Ford would develop and build the VW-badged truck, though its German partner insists the truck will have its own unique design and personality.
Volkswagen’s midsize, body-on-frame Amarok started production in 2010 and is sold in Europe, South America, Mexico, South Africa, and a few other markets. With VW sinking so much cash into EVs, teaming up with Ford on trucks would help the automaker save on development costs.
According to Reuters (via Automotive News Europe), Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles CEO Thomas Sedran said additional joint projects are still under consideration.
“We are in constructive talks about taking a stake in Argo, the Ford division for autonomous driving. A joint company for offering mobility as a service is also a possibility,” Sedran said. A decision will be made in the coming months, he added.
Earlier this year, reports emerged that Volkswagen was considering an investment of up to $1.7 billion in Argo AI, a self-driving startup bought by Ford in 2017.
As for American consumers, VW is still entertaining the idea of releasing a pickup in North America — either a unibody vehicle derived from the Atlas crossover, or perhaps a BOF vehicle created with help from Ford.
[Image: Volkswagen Group]
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- Wjtinfwb Over the years I've owned 3, one LH (a Concorde) a Gen 1 300 and a Gen 2 300C "John Varvatos". The Concorde was a very nice car for the time with immense room inside and decent power from the DOHC 3.5L. But quality was awful, it spent more time in the shop than the driveway. It gave way to a Gen 1 300, OK but the V6 was underwhelming in this car compared to the Concorde but did it's job. The Gen 1's letdown was the awful interior with acres of plastic, leather that did it's best imitation of vinyl and a featureless dashboard that looked lifted from a cheaper car. My last one was a '14 300C John Varvatos with the Pentastar. Great car, sufficient power and exceptional highway mileage. The interior was much better than the original as well. It was felled by a defective instrument cluster that took over 90 days to fix and was ultimately lemon law' d back to FCA. I'd love one of the 392 powered final edition 300s but understand they're already sold out and if I had an extra 60k available, would likely choose a CPO BMW 540i for comparable money.
- Dukeisduke Thanks Cary. Folks need to make sure they buy the correct antifreeze, since there are so many OEM-specific ones out there nowadays (Dex-Cool, Ford gold, Toyota red and pink, etc.).And sorry to hear about your family situation - my wife and I have been dealing with her 88-yo mom, moving her into independent senior living, selling her house, etc. It's a lot to deal with.
- FreedMike Always lusted after that first-gen 300 - particularly the "Heritage Edition," which had special 300 badging and a translucent plastic steering wheel (ala the '50s and '60s "letter cars").
- Dave M. Although the effective takeover by Daimler is pooped upon, this is one they got right. I wasn't a fan of the LHs, mostly due to reported mechanical, NVH and build quality issues, but I though Chrysler hit it out of the park with the LXs. The other hyped release that year was the Ford Five Hundred, which, while a well-built car with superior interior space, couldn't hold a candle to the 300.
- Art Vandelay I always liked those last FWD 300's. Been ages since I've seen one on the road though. Lots of time in the RWD ones as rentals. No complaints whatsoever.