Volvo Cars has begun construction of its South Carolina manufacturing plant, the company’s first facility in North America. The company said it is investing $500 million (€447 million) in the new facility, which initially will have a capacity of up to 100,000 cars per year.
Located in Berkeley County, South Carolina, the all-new manufacturing facility will initially build the next-generation Volvo S60 sedan, which will be based on Volvo Cars’ new Scalable Product Architecture (SPA). The upcoming Volvo S60 Sedan is currently under development at Volvo Car Group headquarters in Gothenburg, Sweden.
Volvo says that American built S60 sedans will be sold in the US market as well as overseas through exports from the Port of Charleston. The plant will also build “another model yet to be determined.” All signs point to the next-generation V60 wagon or XC60 SUV as the second model to be build in the United States.
The first Volvos made in South Carolina are expected to roll off the assembly line in late 2018. The carmaker chose Berkeley County as the location for its first US plant as a result of its “easy access to international ports and infrastructure, a well-trained labor force, an attractive investment environment and experience in the high tech manufacturing sector.”
Volvo Cars estimates that the factory will create up to 2,000 jobs over the next decade and up to 4,000 jobs in the longer term.
With the new US plant, Volvo Cars will have manufacturing facilities on three continents, as the company already operates two car plants in Europe and two in China.