CHATTANOOGA (WRCB)-- Friday, July 15th marks the third anniversary of Volkswagen's announcement to build an automobile manufacturing plant in Chattanooga, a one-billion dollar investment into the local economy.

In the time that followed the news, land was cleared, buildings were constructed, equipment was installed, and the work-force was hired and trained.

"I'm very proud of our team and what we've accomplished and can't wait for the Passat to go on sale this Fall, so Americans can enjoy this excellent car," said Frank Fischer, CEO and Chair of Volkswagen Group of America, Chattanooga Operations.

The first customer car rolled off the line in April of this year, giving all employees another reason to celebrate.

Volkswagen Chattanooga will soon hire its 2000th employee, marking a milestone in its employment agreements with local officials.

"We believe in our employees and our system of training them has produced a dedicated workforce that takes great pride in producing high quality vehicles here in Chattanooga," said Hans-Herbert Jagla, Executive Vice President for Human Resources at Volkswagen Chattanooga.

The plant recently increased production, adding 50 units to the 100 already rolling off the line each day.

The 2012 Passat is expected to hit car lots later this year. The goal is to sell one million Passats by 2018.