Volkswagen is celebrating its first important milestone with the production of the 100,000th car at its new $1 billion Chattanooga factory.
The car - a Night Blue Metallic 2.0-liter TDI SEL Premium - was bought by Joanne Benante, who had the key handed to her by Volkswagen Chattanooga CEO Frank Fischer in a special ceremony that included all the plant's employees.
Passat No. 100,000 was completed just nine months after the car went on sale in the U.S. and 114 days after building the 50,000th car. The plant builds all Passats for the U.S. and for export to Canada, Mexico, the Middle East and South Korea.
Volkswagen Chattanooga Builds 100,000th Car
CHATTANOOGA, TN--(Marketwire - May 31, 2012) - Volkswagen Chattanooga has achieved another significant production milestone -- the completion of its 100,000th Passat, just nine months after the car went on sale in the U.S. The milestone Passat was handed over to its new owner in a ceremony held today with hundreds of Volkswagen employees at the Chattanooga factory.
The Passat was driven off the line by employees from the factory and into the Conference Center where an all-employee meeting was being held this morning. The keys were then handed to Volkswagen Chattanooga CEO and Chairman Frank Fischer who presented them to owner Joanne Benante, who had come from Atlanta, Georgia, to take delivery at the factory. To the cheers of the employees, she then drove her new car through the middle of the gathering and out the front doors on her way back to I-75 and south to Atlanta.
"We have built each and every one of those 100,000 Passats with a passion for detail that sets the standard for safety and reliability for the mid-size sedan market," Fischer said. "I'm so proud of our team for reaching this milestone so quickly while maintaining the superior quality that earned the Passat the Motor Trend 2012 Car of the Year award," Fischer said.
The 100,000th Passat built at the LEED Platinum Certified Chattanooga factory was a Night Blue Metallic 2.0-liter TDI SEL Premium with six-speed DSG® dual-clutch automatic transmission and Moonrock leather interior.
"Producing 100,000 Passats so soon after the vehicle went on sale in September 2011 is a testament to all the hard work that has gone into making our LEED-certified Chattanooga plant and the Passat such a success, both here and abroad," said Jonathan Browning, President and CEO, Volkswagen of America. "It is further evidence that our momentum in the U.S. market is continuing and we are appreciative of our growing customer base, which has been drawn to the Passat's outstanding fuel economy, German engineering and value," Browning said.
The Volkswagen Chattanooga team celebrated completion of the first customer car on April 18, 2011, the 10,000th Passat on Sept. 8, 2011 and the 50,000th Passat on Feb. 7, 2012.
The 100,000 vehicles include pre-series cars, technical training cars, dealer experience cars, U.S. customer cars and export cars to Mexico, Canada, South Korea and the Middle East.