Volkswagen’s Chattanooga plant to open its doors tomorrow

Article by Christian Andrei, on May 23, 2011

The new plant of Volkswagen in Chattanooga is preparing for its official opening on May 24, 2011. Unfortunately, workers had difficulty with the paint finishes of the Passat sedan. In addition, the chrome accents in the door openings, air vents and gear shifts did not have the same level of shine.

Chief Executive Officer Martin Winterkorn became impatient with the staff in the Chattanooga plant. According to the May 23 issue of Bloomberg Businessweek, Winterkorn wanted to inspect the components with chrome finishes, which were hung on a wall for his examination.

However, he wanted them arrayed side by side in a Plexiglas case in order to look at the components from above – the same way that customers will see them with the vehicle.

Volkswagen and Winterkorn have a lot riding on the $1 billion factory, which has a production capacity of 150,000 Passats a year. The U.S. version of Passat features more robust air conditioning, more legroom and bigger control buttons compared to the European version.

The U.S. variant is also approximately $8,000 cheaper at around $20,000, due to the lower wages in the country, local content as well as simplified designs.

The opening of the factory marks the beginning of a renewed push by the vehicle manufacturer to shed its also-ran status in the U.S., where it hasn’t posted a profit since 2002.

Volkswagen also wants to outperform Toyota Motor Corp. as the largest vehicle manufacturer in the world. Winterkorn said in an interview that anyone who wants to be the No. 1 in the industry has to be successful in the U.S. market. Last January, the company launched a U.S. version of the Passat at the motor show in Detroit.

If you liked the article, share on:

Comments

Login or Create new account to add a comment!

Recommended

Nearly all details have been set with regards to the upcoming market introduction of the new Jaguar I-Pace. Its production version was recently previewed at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto...
by - December 8, 2016
WM Motor, a new China-based automaker, recently revealed its forthcoming lineup consisting of affordable electric vehicles. While there is a company is the U.S. that has the same name, they...
by - December 8, 2016
Even when Aston Martin has been mum about the upcoming AM-RB 001 hypercar, Marek Reichman at least has something new to say. In a recent interview with Australia’s Motoring, the...
by - December 8, 2016
The people at Mercedes-Benz are rejoicing. This is simply because for the first time since 1979, Mercedes-Benz has assembled 20,000 – and still counting – examples of the Mercedes-Benz G-Class....
by - December 8, 2016
When Donkervoort Automobielen BV unveiled its Donkervoort D8 GTO-RS limited edition in May 2016, customer interest has been so overwhelming that the Lelystad, Netherlands-based carmaker sold out this one-of-a-kind vehicle...
by - December 8, 2016
Facebook

Youtube Channel

Tip Us
Do you have a tip for us?
Did you film an important event?
Contact us
Newsletter
Subscribe to our newsletter!
Subscribe
Galleries