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JAXPORT, Volkswagen Reach Agreement To Keep Cars Coming Into Port

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JAXPORT
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Siem Confucius, a car-carrying vessel fueled by LNG made its maiden voyage to JAXPORT last week.

Audis, Bentleys, Volkswagens and Porsches will keep arriving at JAXPORT thanks to a new agreement reached by JAXPORT and Volkswagen.

Volkswagen started shipping through JAXPORT in 2015 when it moved its Southeast U.S. distribution operations and import facility to Jacksonville for a contract term that was due to expire in June. The renewal is for three years and includes two one-year renewal options.

“Jacksonville has been a good home base for our Southeast U.S. distribution operations,” said Mark Ilijanic, Volkswagen Group of America Senior Vice President – Parts & Vehicle Logistics.

JAXPORT estimates VW’s Jacksonville operations support 100 area jobs.

VW recently commissioned two new vehicle carriers operated by cleaner, greener liquefied natural gas (LNG). Both vessels will regularly call on Jacksonville. The first vessel, Siem Confucius, made its maiden voyage to JAXPORT last week.

Volkswagen has been making moves toward a greener future following its “Diesel Gate” emissions scandal. It is currently launching a series of electric vehicles that include the Audi e-tron, Porsche Taycan and Volkswagen ID 3.  Although the ID 3 isn’t being sold in the U.S., the other two are already on sale here.

The first dedicated electric-only platform VW scheduled to be sold in the U.S. will be the ID 4 crossover, which will be built in Chattanooga. Tenn. It is expected to be followed in the U.S. by what is currently called the VW ID Buzz, which is an electric version of the company’s classic Microbus.

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Credit Volkswagen Newsroom
The VW ID Buzz (right) is part of Volkswagen's move toward electric vehicles. The name and some of the styling details could change by the time it makes production.

JAXPORT says it is the nation’s No. 2 vehicle-handling port.

Bill Bortzfield can be reached at bbortzfield@wjct.org or on Twitter at @BortzInJax.