Volkswagen AG put rubber on the road for its stateside production of electrical vehicles this week. The German automaker announced Tuesday, July 26 that it had started production of its all-electric SUV, the ID.4, at its factory in Chattanooga, Tennessee. According to the company, the first of the EVs made there could reach markets by October.
In a statement, Chris Glover, president of the Chattanooga plant, thanked VW’s “highly motivated team members” for their support. “There has been a tremendous effort by thousands of VW Chattanooga employees to bring this vision to life,” Glover said. Volkswagen global chairman Thomas Schäfer, in the same statement, said the start of production marks “a new chapter for Volkswagen in America.”
The Volkswagen, Chattanooga plant will get parts and supplies for the vehicle mostly from other locations in North America, the company said, including steel from Alabama and Ohio, interior parts in Indiana and South Carolina, electronics from Kentucky and North Carolina, and batteries from SK Innovation’s location in Georgia.
VW has set a goal for 55% of its U.S. sales to be fully electric by 2030, and the company has spent $7.1 billion in North America towards realizing that. Volkswagen Chattanooga itself is actively seeking more than a thousand new hires through the end of the year to add to its existing roster of about 4,000 employees.