VW Chattanooga Building Hundreds of Passat TDIs Without Front Fascias

Mark Stevenson
by Mark Stevenson
vw chattanooga building hundreds of passat tdis without front fascias

According to one Chattanooga factory worker on the TDI Club forum, Volkswagen is ramping up production of the new Passat TDI despite not being certified by the Environmental Protection Agency regarding its emissions.

The new 2016 Passat, which will launch later this year, is equipped with three different engines — a 1.8-liter turbocharged and a 3.6-liter V-6 gasoline engines, and a 2-liter diesel engine. The poster said those cars already built and equipped with the TDI engine are missing significant portions of their front fascia as they come off the assembly line.

The Passats in question are missing headlights, grilles and front bumpers, said the poster.

From the poster:

Current production on the 2016 Passat is increasing at the Chattanooga plant. We are all confused as to what VW is doing. Initially, we were only building the 4 cylinder gas engine for the US market for California only. We were building the diesel engines for Canada only. We built a few 4 and 5 cylinder gas engines for Mexico and Saudi Arabia. Last week the day after the news broke that VW was pulling the request for certifying the diesel engines in the US, guess what happened? We started building the US diesel every 2 or 3 cars on the line. The difference is, the US cars are missing the headlights and front bumpers and grills. They are wrapping them and parking them in the outside lot. We increased production to 180 cars per shift, 2 shifts total.

We aren’t sure what the reasoning behind the US diesels are unless they plan on stockpiling them and getting certification approval at a later date. Either way, building only California gas engines only and none for the rest of the US is causing everyone to be concerned for our future here. We built 180 total cars on day shift yesterday (Monday).

We were told last week that the fix isn’t going to be easy for existing TDI’s. If the software upgrades don’t fix the emission problems we were told the other option might be a new engine install. Could be a very costly and difficult fix. Yes, we are worried about our future here.

So, with limited production of gas models for the U.S. and a ramp up of diesel production, it looks like Volkswagen is confident they will be able to sell Passat TDIs soon.

We’ve reached out to officials in Chattanooga but have yet to hear back.

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2 of 59 comments
  • Corey Lewis Corey Lewis on Oct 15, 2015

    "Building Hundreds of Passat TDIs Without Front Fascias" They're just making the timing belt and headlamp bulb replacement easier for the consumer.

  • Deanst Deanst on Oct 20, 2015

    Where's the article lamenting the death of the manual transmission Passat?

  • Jdt65724922 How can a Chrysler E-Class ride better than a Chrysler Fifth Avenue?
  • Lorenzo This series is epic, but I now fear you'll never get to the gigantic Falcon/Dart/Nova comparison.
  • Chris P Bacon Ford and GM have decided that if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. Odds are Chrysler/Cerberus/FCA/Stellantis is next to join in. If any of the companies like Electrify America had been even close to Tesla in reliability, we wouldn't be here.
  • Inside Looking Out China will decide which EV charging protocol will become world wide standard.
  • Chris P Bacon I see no reference to Sweden or South Carolina. I hate to assume, but is this thing built in China? I can't help but wonder if EVs would be more affordable to the masses if they weren't all stuffed full of horsepower most drivers will never use. How much could the price be reduced if it had, say, 200hp. Combined with the instant torque of an EV, that really is plenty of power for the daily commuter, which is what this vehicle really is.