The Volkswagen Group has reaffirmed its planned investments at the Chattanooga location and in the production of an all-new SUV for the U.S. market. To that end, the company wants to invest $600 million in the State of Tennessee alone, creating an additional 2,000 jobs in the U.S. Production of the new midsize SUV in Chattanooga is scheduled to commence at the end of 2016.
“This clear commitment to the Chattanooga location confirms our engagement in North America and our confidence in the local team. More than ever, we must and will focus on the specific wishes of our U.S. customers so that we can offer them vehicles that are not only convincing, but also inspirational. Step by step, that is how we want to win back trust in the Volkswagen brand,” said Michael Horn, president and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America. “The United States of America is still one of Volkswagen’s most important markets.”
A further 50,000 square meters is currently being added to existing space at the site to cater for the logistics of producing the new midsize SUV for North America. Production of the new vehicle will be integrated in the existing factory structures, according to the company.
Volkswagen has already invested more than $1 billion in its Tennessee plant to date. Over 2,400 employees currently work at the plant; the 500,000 U.S. Passat rolled off the assembly line in the summer, according to the company.
A further element in the Volkswagen brand’s North America strategy is a three-row version of the new Tiguan, which the company said is scheduled to start leaving the assembly line at the plant in Puebla, Mexico in 2017.