Little Darth Vader Uses The Force to Open VW Chattanooga Plant

Volkswagen started this whole “Star Wars” mania with the Super Bowl XLV spot back in January, when the all-new 2012 Passat ad featured a a pint-sized Darth Vader, who uses the Force when he discovers the all-new vehicle in the driveway. Well, the same character, played by six-year-old Max Page, was on site at the Chattanooga plant inauguration, where he again used The Force.

In fact, the little Darth Vader made a determined entry, escorted by an army of Stormtroopers as the Star Wars theme music was played. He again tried, using only his mind and hands, to push the button that officially opened the factory in the presence of prominent representatives from politics, business and the media.

The ceremony was also attended by Dr. Klaus Scharioth, German Ambassador to the United States, Bill Haslam, Governor of the U.S. State of Tennessee, Jonathan Browning, President and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America, as well as U.S. senators Robert Corker and Lamar Alexander.

The new VW plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, will have over 2,000 employees producing up to 150,000 vehicles per year. Volkswagen is investing about one billion US dollars in the plant’s development, and one of the key measures taken at the plant is the use of a painting process without any filler, which reduces CO2 emissions by about 20 percent.

The Volkswagen offensive in the United States is led by the Passat (produced in Chattanooga), the Jetta (produced in Mexico), and the soon-to-be-introduced Beetle.

"The Volkswagen Group has finally arrived as a local manufacturer in the United States. We are proud to be part of this great automobile nation as a producer, an employer and as a friend and good neighbor to people in the region,"
stated Martin Winterkorn, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG, at the opening ceremony.

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