Is Volkswagen Going to Expand Its Respected Tennessee Plant?

Though Volkswagen loves to point at its Chattanooga, Tennessee plant as a working example of efficient production and energy conservation, the German automaker refuses to answer questions as to whether or not the plant will produce VW’s new crossover SUV.

Tennesseans are hopeful that they will indeed be given the honor of making this new vehicle. In fact, they are so keen on getting the assignment that a whole gaggle of local officials made their ways to Wolfsburg, Germany to make their case at VW headquarters in early June. Industry observers believe that taking on the crossover will double the number of workers at the plant from 2,500 to 5,000. Currently, each year, the plant generates about $53 million in state and local taxes along with more than $643 million, according to a recent University of Tennessee study.  

Writing about the trip, Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke said, “We are always looking for ways to work with them and encourage their growth in Chattanooga.” Jim Coppinger, the mayor of nearby Hamilton County, expressed similar thoughts when he said, “No doubt it takes incentives.”

Most believe that VW will make a decision in July.