2011 marks the year for Volkswagen to expand their presence in the United States with the opening of their new manufacturing plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee. This new plant will have over 2,000 employees producing up to 150,000 vehicles per year. 1,700 people are already employed directly by Volkswagen in Chattanooga and 10,000 additional jobs will be created in the U.S. supply industry.
At the inauguration ceremony, which was attended by Dr. Klaus Scharioth, German Ambassador to the United States, Bill Haslam, Governor of the U.S. State of Tennessee, Jonathan Browning, President and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America, as well as U.S. senators Robert Corker and Lamar Alexander, Prof. Winterkorn stated: “The Volkswagen Group has finally arrived as a local manufacturer in the United States. We are proud to be part of this great automobile nation as a producer, an employer and as a friend and good neighbor to people in the region.”
Since construction started in 2009, an automobile plant including body shop, paint shop, assembly facility, technical testing center, academy for the initial and advanced training of employees, and a supplier park have been built on a 1,400 acre site in Chattanooga.
The United States is one of the world’s largest automobile markets and the new U.S. plant lays the foundation for Volkswagen to meet its target of increasing sales in the United States to more than a million vehicles per year by 2018 at the same time as winning a market share of about six percent for the Volkswagen Group.
The New Passat, which will launch later this summer, and the new Beetle, coming in September, will fully support this new objective to reach out to the American people. The new models are specifically designed to appeal to the American consumer and will carry on the legacy of Volkswagen performance well into the future.
The construction of this new manufacturing plant has not only created thousands of U.S. jobs but has also created an opportunity for the launch of their brand new 2012 models. With the excitement surrounding the new, innovative manufacturing plant and the anticipation of the 2012 models, Volkswagen lovers and driving aficionados alike are looking forward to the newly established presence of the German automobile company.