VW plans second SUV at Tennessee factory, investing $340 million more

Dianna Christensen
March 20, 2018

Volkswagen announced on Monday that it will build a five-passenger SUV based on the Atlas.

VW plans to reveal at the NY auto show next week a five-passenger SUV concept, presaging a model the automaker will build at its $900 million factory near Chattanooga that's assembling the seven-seat Atlas.

Volkswagen is adding another vehicle to its local production line.

VW said it would reveal the model's name in NY.

President Donald Trump has complained about the imbalance in tariffs between the USA and Germany, calling for "reciprocal" taxes.

The German automaker said the funds will go towards beefing up the Chattanooga, Tennessee plant to build additional Atlas sport utility vehicles geared towards the USA market.

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VW spokeswoman Jeannine Ginivan said in an email that the move "is not a reaction to the proposed tariffs".

Volkswagen will likely pitch the Atlas five-seater alternately as a less expensive base model on the low end and a stylish, premium sport-ute "coupe" in higher trims. The Passat was the first vehicle built at the plant.

A concept version of the new model will be shown at the NY auto show later this month, and Volkswagen has released an illustration of that vehicle (see above).

It's not uncommon for automakers to make slightly smaller versions of existing SUVs in hopes of capitalizing on Americans' thirst for larger vehicles.

"During my time as governor, I've watched Volkswagen Chattanooga flourish from a single vehicle producer, starting with the Passat, into what it is today-a thriving USA manufacturing operation that can produce three models and county". The $340 million investment comes in addition to $900 million VW has already put into its Chattanooga plant to build the Atlas.

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