Volkswagen’s U.S. Distribution Center Begins Operations In Jacksonville
The Port of Jacksonville has begun service as Volkswagen’s (VW) Southeastern U.S. distribution hub, as the 650-foot auto ship Chesapeake Highway recently unloaded nearly 1,000 new VW Jettas, Beetles and Golfs at the port’s auto processing and distribution facility on Blount Island.
The cars, which are produced at VW’s assembly plant in Puebla, Mexico, comprise the first wave of shipments by the German auto maker, which plans to import about 100,000 cars in the first year of its contract and upwards of 550,000 cars over the next five years.
JACKSONVILLE BEATS SEVERAL EAST COAST PORTS FOR VW’S BUSINESS
Volkswagen’s selection of JAXPORT, announced this past February, was considered a commercial coup considering that the automaker previously imported its vehicles through Port of Brunswick in Georgia. JAXPORT beat out Tampa, Charleston and several other U.S. East Coast ports that had vied for VW’s business.
All imported vehicles passing through Jacksonville are processed by AMPORTS, which operates 14 auto-import vehicle-processing terminals in the U.S. and Mexico.
Once at Jacksonville processing facility, which recently underwent a $3 million upgrade, vehicles are customized with floor mats and safety kits and receive final detailing before they are shipped to dealerships throughout the U.S. Southeast.
AUTO IMPORTS ARE PICKING UP SPEED AT JAXPORT
Earlier this year, Jacksonville also received its first shipment of 2015 Jeep Renegade SUVs, the first Jeep ever to be built exclusively outside of the U.S.
Designed in Detroit, the 2015 Jeep Renegades are built in Melfi, Italy, alongside the company’s new Fiat 500X subcompact crossover, which will be also be distributed throughout the U.S. Southeast later this year via the Port of Jacksonville’s Blount Island Auto Terminal.