A new report on website CarBuzz confirms Volkswagen is at least considering some form of a pickup truck offering. The report cites a conversation between the publication and Volkswagen’s chief of engineering, Dr. Matthias Erb on the sidelines of this week’s Detroit Auto Show.
Dr. Erb confirmed that the German automaker is exploring the idea of using the new Atlas crossover as the basis for a new pickup truck offering. The idea seems like an obvious one given VW’s quest to become a high-volume automaker in the United States, a market in which pickup sales are a large chunk of sales volume.
It’s assumed that such a production would be similar to the Honda Ridgeline, which follows a similar formula in that it’s based on the Pilot crossover.
VW already sells the Amarok midsize pickup in several global markets. The company has historically stated it has no plans to bring the Amarok to the North American market, which was reiterated by Dr. Erb when speaking with the publication.
Dr. Erb also eluded that VW is at least throwing out the idea of producing a true body-on-frame pickup truck, which would be a dramatic development. Though the prospects of this seem unlikely as Dr. Erb went on to acknowledge the difficulty in penetrating the U.S. full-size pickup market.
“More than 80% of trucks in the US are full-size. There are three main automakers who greatly protect this segment: Ford, GM and Ram. They’re not just about to let someone else invade their turf,” admitted Dr. Erb.