Volkswagen AG announced they will be adding an additional 800 jobs to the Chattanooga, Tennessee plant. Bringing the facility up to more than 3,000 employees, which opened last May.
Hiring 800 more people will help amp up the production of the Passat cars to meet the rising demand. Frank Fischer, director of the plant, “This is a clear sign that the plant ramp-up has been successful and is a validation that the Passat is of the highest quality. Our plant was designed to be flexible in order to respond to market demand and I’m proud that we’ve achieved this so quickly.”
Jonathan Browning, head of VW operations in North America said, “The plant’s additional production will bring annual capacity to 170,000 vehicles, up about 20,000 from current capacity. In the ramp up year of 2011, the plant produced about 40,000 Passats. 25 percent of all Volkswagens sold in the United States are Passats made in Chattanooga.”
Volkswagen’s Chattanooga made Passat passenger car is one of the top-selling vehicles in a U.S. market that best sells for the fuel efficiency.
The Chattanooga, Tennessee Volkswagen plant is the world’s only LEED certified Platinum manufacturing facility and is specially designed for the North America market. They are the most advanced in energy-efficiency for assembly plants.
Meanwhile, Volkswagen AG was ranked No. 2 worldwide last year in sales they are benefiting from a recovery in the U.S. auto market and solid demand for its new VW Passat among other cars.
Marty Padgett, editorial director of High Gear Media said, “Every vehicle manufacturer that has chosen to transplant to the U.S. has bought a big parcel of land. VW’s is probably twice as large as they need for their current operations. Their sister brand Audi has talked about building cars in North America. And it’s not difficult to see how the future plays out.”
VW has said it will sell more than 500,000 vehicles, including Audi models, in 2012, and wants to increase its U.S. sales to 1 million vehicles by 2018. While they have a target of selling 10 million vehicles globally by 2018.