“We’re excited to build our first American factory in South Carolina and we look forward to helping grow the local community and economy.” said Lex Kerssemakers, President and CEO of Volvo Cars of North America, in a statement. “We were impressed with the friendliness, work ethic and passion of the people in the Charleston area.”
The announcement is a major boost to the job market in South Carolina.
According to a press release, Volvo estimates the factory will employ up to 2,000 people over the next decade, and up to 4,000 people in the longer term.
The plant is projected to contribute approximately $4.8 billion in total economic output each year, the press release states.
“Volvo’s presence and commitment to the community will be felt for decades to come,” S.C. Governor Nikki Haley is quoted as saying in Volvo press release.
Upon opening, the Berkeley County, South Carolina Volvo factory will be the global production home of the all new S60 Sedan, which is currently under development at Volvo Car Group headquarters in Gothenburg, Sweden.
American built S60s will be exported around the world through the Port of Charleston, along with another model yet to be determined.
The first South Carolina-built Volvos are expected to roll off the assembly line in late 2018.
The groundbreaking comes as Volvo’s global transformation and U.S. comeback takes root. Volvo saw U.S. sales increase by double-digit percentages over the last two months, with global sales rebounding across car lines. Demand has been strong for the all-new XC90 7-Seat SUV, which was released this summer.