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Volkswagen celebrates the history of the Passat in the U.S. and looks towards the future in Chattanooga

Passat first sold in the U.S. in 1974 as the Dasher, and U.S. sales total more than 1.8 million Passat family models

Volkswagen of America ended assembly  of the Passat at the Chattanooga, Tennessee plant in December. The last car off the line was a 2022 Passat Limited Edition in Platinum Grey. As Passat ends its run, the Chattanooga Assembly Plant turns its focus to EVs, and will begin localized assembly of the ID.4 SUV later this year.

In the U.S., more than 1.8 million Passat models have been sold since 1974. The first versions of the Passat family sedans and wagons from Volkswagen for U.S. customers were launched in 1974 under the Dasher name. More than 222,000 were sold before the car was replaced by the second-generation Passat, this time marketed as the Quantum. The Passat name appeared for the first time in the U.S. market in 1990 and has remained ever since. The first six generations were exported from Europe.

In 2011, Volkswagen started assembling the Passat for the North American market out of its advanced assembly plant in Chattanooga. Specifically designed for North America, the 2012 Passat was bigger than the previous model, with ample rear-seat and trunk space, offering German engineering and styling at a competitive price. The U.S.-assembled Passat has been exported around the world—to Canada, South Korea and Middle Eastern markets—ever since.

“Volkswagen is in the business of making memories, and for 50 years nearly two million Volkswagen owners made memories behind the wheel of a Passat,” said Scott Keogh, President and CEO, Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. “For the thousands of our workers in Chattanooga, that is what makes their job special. And as we look to the future, with the Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport in high demand, and the assembly launch of our all-electric ID.4 SUV coming later this year, they’re ready to help America make millions more of those memories.”

“When Passat production came to Tennessee, I was so proud to be a part of the debut at the 2011 North American Auto Show, representing Chattanooga and Hamilton County,” says Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger.  “It’s equally exciting to look towards the next chapter of Volkswagen’s journey in Hamilton County, with EV assembly and the creation of new high-tech jobs for our area.”

The Volkswagen Chattanooga Assembly Plant is transforming to support electric mobility. Volkswagen is investing a further $800 million in the Chattanooga factory for the production of electric vehicles, in addition to the more than $2.6 billion that VW has invested in the area. In addition to the ID.4 and the battery packs it runs on being assembled at the plant, the local Engineering and Planning Center is becoming the EV test hub for Volkswagen in North America, and the Volkswagen Academy is adapting its curriculum to encompass e-mobility.

SOURCE: Volkswagen

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