Accelerating the Tennessee Valley automotive industry

Focus Areas

Operational Improvements & Capital Access

The DRIVE! Consortium increases SME access to operational improvements and capital to ensure firms across the supplier network can capitalize on the region’s research and innovation assets. This includes increasing the advanced manufacturing and automotive capabilities of participating MEPs; increasing regional collaboration of MEPs across state lines to provide advanced manufacturing services; expanding energy, environmental, and economic efficiency programs; and expanding programs and mechanisms that make capital more accessible to small firms for operational improvements.

Operational Improvement Training

In partnership with a major automaker, the University of Tennessee has been training quality managers in the supplier network. These courses have been so successful that participants come from all over North America.

Capital Investment Commitments

Manufacturers have announced more than $1 billion in capital investment commitments in the DRIVE! region over the past three years.

CompanyCapital JobsLocationDate
Hankook Tire Co., Ltd. $800 M 1,800 Clarksville Oct 2013
Calsonic Kensei North America, Inc. $110 M 1,200 Shelbyville, Lewisberg, Smyrna Sep 2013
Magneti Marelli Suspension USA, LLC $53.7 M 800 Pulaski Jun 2012
Volkswagon of America   1,000 Chattanooga Mar 2012
Nissan North America, Inc. $325 K 2,200 Smyrna Jan/Oct 2012
GM Spring Hill Manufacturing $244 M 2,350 Spring Hill Nov 2011
Map of the Tennessee Valley

The Tennessee Valley region is home to six major automotive manufacturers with a supply chain of over 900 mostly small- and medium-sized businesses, employing more than 100,000 people.

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