Volkswagen is introducing a new mid-size sedan specifically for the US market and wants 80 per cent of the content to be sourced from North America in the medium term.
The vehicle will be made at the company’s planned $1 billion Tennessee facility due to open in 2011 in Chattanooga and a supplier park will be developed 1,000 feet from it to provide the parts. The plans include local production of engines and transmissions and the carmaker is already in talks with a number of suppliers and logistics providers around the southeast region of the US.
VW will initially supplement local production of engines with imports from its Mexican plant in Puebla.
Last week the Governor of Tennessee, Phil Bredesen and Chattanooga mayor Ron Littlefield joined a 50-strong delegation visiting German cities, including Düsseldorf, Frankfurt and Munich, to lure potential VW suppliers to Chattanooga. The visits followed their attendance at the Volkswagen Supplier Congress, which was held in VW’s headquarters in Wolfsburg.
Annual production volumes at the new facility will initially hit 150,000 but VW has plans to eventually raise that to 250,000.
Pictured (l to r): Ron Littlefield Mayor of Chattanooga; Matthew Kisber Commissioner, Department of Economic and Community Development, Tennessee; Siegfried Fiebig, Plant manager and Head of Golf production Volkswagen Wolfsburg; Phil Bredesen, Governor of Tennessee; Claude Ramsey, County Mayor Hamilton