The United States is the largest single market for Volvo XC90, which is why the Swedish carmaker has decided to build the next generation of its flagship SUV at the new manufacturing plant in Charleston, South Carolina from 2021.
This takes Volvo Cars’ total investment in its US manufacturing operations to over $1.1 billion and will raise the total number of new jobs created at the Charleston site to nearly 4,000.
The South Carolina plant will start production of the next generation S60 in fall 2018. Besides the 2,000 new employees currently being hired, the addition of the next generation XC90 from 2021 as well as a planned new office campus will create 1,900 new jobs.
The decision to choose South Carolina was because of its easy access to international ports and infrastructure, a well-trained labour force, an attractive investment environment and experience in the high tech manufacturing sector, said the company. Total US production capacity at the plant will rise to 150,000 vehicles annually.
The XC90 has played an important role in Volvo Cars’ sales revival in the United States and around the globe. The luxury SUV has helped Volvo Cars recover its sales in the United States from a low of 56,000 units sold in 2014 to almost 83,000 units in 2016, said Volvo.
The South Carolina plant is a part of the company’s build where you sell global manufacturing strategy. It currently operates two manufacturing plants in Europe, as well as two factories in China. A third Chinese plant is currently under construction.
The planned new office building at the Charleston site will house up to 300 staff from R&D, purchasing, quality as well as Volvo’s Southern Regional Sales team.
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