Chattanooga-made Passat named 2012 Car of the Year
CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) -- The Chattanooga-made Passat hits the big time! Motor Trend Magazine named it the 2012 Car of the year.
The Passat beat out 34 other cars.
Motor Trend says that's because "the chassis, steering, ride and handling are all tastiest within this segment."
Calling it "Volkswagen's strongest entry to date in the mid-sized sedan" market.
Music to the ears not only of local folks making it but also to those selling the now: celebrity car.
Since the first 2012 Passat rolled off the assembly line at the German automaker's new plant here in Chattanooga, it's been all about hometown pride.
Only a couple months on the market-- numbers show Passat sales the highest in nearly six years for the midsize sedan, significant increases nation-wide and locally.
"It's gotten well received with being built here in Chattanooga our sales have actually taken off tremendously in the Passat line so "car of the year" it's just going to double them I hope," says Ron Kwiatkowski, sales manager for Village Volkswagon.
Being named car of the year is just one more reason Village Volkswagon expects another sales boost.
"I'm very pleased. It's just one more accolade. It never hurts to have all those tools in your tool box," says Jon Arbuckle, fleet director for Village Volkswagon.
Tuesday night, the city of Ted Bank decided to invest in the car agreeing to purchase two new Passats to add to it's police fleet.
"It's not going to be pursuit, but it will be plain clothes detectives, unmarked cars," says Arbuckle.
They're also in talks with other departments in Hamilton and Bradley counties and hope this most recent honor will seal the deal.
"We're anticipating there will be an additional demand. I've already been talking with other police agencies in the area," says Arbuckle.
Also recently named the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's top safety pick in its segment.
These salesmen say one thing is for sure.
"We're happy to be selling the Volkswagon Passats," says Arbuckle.
Volkswagon will unveil its Car of the Year award in a celebration Friday morning.
The editor-in-chief of Motor Trend Magazine" will be there to congratulate all the local workers who've put in the elbow grease.