• In the last 5 years, nearly 6.2 million
    vehicles have been produced in Kentucky

  • The automotive industry employs nearly 100,000
    workers at over 500 establishments

  • 1,316,137 Kentucky-made vehicle
    were produced in 2016

  • $5.4 billion in Kentucky-made vehicles and
    parts were exported in 2016

  • Kentucky is the #1 vehicle-producing state
    per capita, and #3 overall

Auto Parts Maker DAE-IL Breaks Ground on 120-Job Facility in Murray

Gov. Matt Bevin today congratulated leaders of South Korea’s DAE-IL Corp. and the Murray community as officials broke ground for the company’s $50 million, 120-job automotive parts plant in West Kentucky.

“We are grateful for DAE-IL’s decision to build its first US manufacturing facility here in the commonwealth, and we congratulate them on starting construction in Murray,” Gov. Bevin said. “Kentucky has a proven track record of successfully attracting and integrating businesses into our economy, and our relationship with another South Korean company set the stage for this opportunity. DAE-IL’s significant investment will create great jobs for citizens of Calloway County and West Kentucky, and we are confident that they will thrive and grow in the commonwealth.”

Company leaders expect the 295,000-square-foot plant, being built in the Murray-West Industrial Park, to open in May 2019. Employees at the new facility will manufacture automotive transmission gears.

“We are very happy and excited to be in Murray. We would like to thank everyone that has played a part in this,” said DAE-IL President and CEO Johnny Kim. “They have made us feel very welcomed here. We look forward to a long, successful partnership with the community.”

Founded in 1976 and headquartered in Ulsan, South Korea, DAE-IL Corp. manufactures and sells powertrain parts for automotive, heavy equipment and motorcycles. Its products include gears, car transmission and engine parts, heavy equipment products – such as transaxles, drive axles and transmission and excavator products – and motorcycle transmission and engine products. The company’s primary export markets include the US, China, Europe and Japan.

DAE-IL joins four other South Korean owned companies in Kentucky, which already employ about 400 people. The state’s automotive industry includes 522 facilities employing more than 100,000 people. Kentucky’s gateway position between the automotive hotbeds of the US Midwest and South make it a top location for parts production, component manufacturing and vehicle assembly.

Sen. Stan Humphries, of Cadiz, expressed gratitude for the company’s arrival to Calloway County.

“It gives me great pleasure to welcome DAE-IL Corp.’s first US manufacturing facility to Murray,” Sen. Humphries said. “This $50 million facility that looks to create 120 new Kentucky jobs is huge for our region. I want to congratulate and thank DAE-IL for choosing Murray for their new facility, and thanks to the Cabinet for Economic Development for helping make this project possible.”

Rep. Kenny Imes, of Murray, thanked the company and economic developers who made the project happen.

“The addition to Murray of the first US manufacturing facility for DAE-IL will reap huge rewards for Kentuckians in the entire region,” Rep. Imes said. “A $50 million shot in the arm for our economy and 120 new jobs in the booming auto industry are huge news, and I commend everybody involved in making this happen. Western Kentucky is on the right track to surge into future success.”

Calloway County Judge-Executive Larry Elkins said the nature of the positions being made available at DAE-IL will greatly benefit the local workforce.

“Both I and the fiscal court want to express how pleased we are to see this project come to Calloway County,” Judge-Executive Elkins said. “Creating jobs that are high tech and with good pay supports families and makes our community a great place to live. Not only will this company provide production jobs but there will be opportunities for engineers, technicians and other skilled professionals.”

Murray Mayor Jack Rose acknowledged the group effort necessary to make a project such as this possible.

“This is indeed a great day for Murray and Calloway County. The EDC has been working on this with the Cabinet for Economic Development and TVA for quite some time, and it is great to see everything come together,” Mayor Rose said. “We have a great team in place and we look forward to helping DAE-IL become an integral part of this community.”

Mark Manning, president of the Murray-Calloway Economic Development Corp., said the company has strong leadership that will be beneficial in integrating into the community.

“I have come to know Mr. Kim and his staff quite well over the last year and can say without hesitation that they are the kind of people who will fit well in Murray,” Manning said. “We will do our very best to help see that they are successful and happy here for many years.”

To encourage the investment and job growth in the community, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) in December 2017 preliminarily approved the company for tax incentives up to $3 million through the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based incentive allows a company to keep a portion of its investment over the agreement term through corporate income tax credits and wage assessments by meeting job and investment targets.

Additionally, KEDFA approved DAE-IL for up to $500,000 in tax incentives through the Kentucky Enterprise Initiative Act (KEIA). KEIA allows approved companies to recoup Kentucky sales and use tax on construction costs, building fixtures, equipment used in research and development and electronic processing.

In addition, DAE-IL can receive resources from the Kentucky Skills Network. Through the Kentucky Skills Network, companies can receive no-cost recruitment and job placement services, reduced-cost customized training and job training incentives. In fiscal year 2017, the Kentucky Skills Network provided training for more than 120,000 Kentuckians and 5,700 companies from a variety of industry sectors.

A detailed community profile for Calloway County can be viewed here.

AutoVision 2017 conference to provide high-octane insight, networking

August event offers more matchmaking opportunities than ever in its third year

FRANKFORT, Ky. (July 11, 2017) – With the AutoVision 2017 conference less than a month away, the best opportunity to register for the state’s premier automotive-related event, hosted by the Kentucky Automotive Industry Association, is now.

In its third year, the conference will address issues facing the auto industry including a growing focus on autonomous technology, fuel-efficiency standards, a proposed border adjustment tax and innovative new workforce strategies.

The event, scheduled for Aug. 7-8 at the Griffin Gate Marriott in Lexington, will feature a multitude of networking and matchmaking opportunities for parts suppliers and OEMs within the automotive sector, as well as public discussions featuring top industry executives and experts that will help attendees position themselves and their companies for future success.

“We at KAIA could not be more thrilled to get AutoVision 2017 underway,” said Dave Tatman, the association’s executive director. “The conference has been a remarkable success each of the past two years, and we have more opportunities than ever to bring industry leaders together to help further company and industrywide goals. I cannot wait to see what’s next, and that’s what this event is all about.”

Autonomous technology and its growing presence within the auto industry will be a focal point at the conference with a panel discussion on the topic hosted by Lindsay Chappell, industry editor at Automotive News. Gary Silberg, national sector lead partner with KPMG, is back by popular demand following captivating discussions during each of the first two sessions to discuss the changing automotive landscape.

Jon Coleman, Ford Motor Co. fleet sustainability and technology manager, will illuminate ways the company is helping its fleet customers improve their results. Lawrence E. Brown, executive director of LIFT consortium, will highlight progress in lightweighting. Joseph McCabe, president and CEO of AutoForecast Solutions, will discuss current market trends and the industry’s overall direction. These are just a few of the industry leaders who will be on hand to share their knowledge, experiences and views for the future.

“We have some great events on the slate for this year’s conference, and I look forward to hearing what each of the speakers has to say about where the automotive industry is headed,” said Mandy Lambert, KAIA board chair member and commissioner of the Department for Business Development with the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development. “However, it is the additional matchmaking opportunities at AutoVision 2017 that set this event apart from previous editions. It is our hope that this event not only assists attendees to determine the appropriate next steps within their respective companies, but also sets the foundation for those steps to be taken sooner rather than later.”

Those new opportunities to connect members of the auto industry come in the form of the SPARK Matchmaking event, which will be held on Monday, Aug. 7. The event provides an opportunity for attendees who purchase one of the limited matchmaking packages to hold exclusive one-on-one meetings with leading OEM and tier 1 company executives. The inaugural SPARK event was held separately in 2016, and the success of the conference led to its incorporation into AutoVision 2017.

AutoVision this year offers additional networking opportunities, including a tour of the new Bluegrass Community and Technical College training center and of the new Creform Material Handling Systems facility in Georgetown, lunch at Country Boy Brewing’s new operation in Scott County, and the Mubea-sponsored DinnerView reception and dinner, which requires separate registration.

The event’s breakout sessions will focus on workforce initiatives, a Soft Skills Boot Camp, financial benefits of using renewable resources and leveraging efficient-vehicle R&D.

The conference follows prior successful AutoVision events from 2015 and 2016. After last year’s event, 100 percent of surveyed participants say they would recommend the conference to others, while 88 percent noted valuable connections made at AutoVision.

AutoVision is an initiative of KAIA. The Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development is the presenting sponsor of this year’s event.

For more information on, or to register for, AutoVision 2017, visit www.AutoVisionConference.com.

For inquiries about sponsorships or exhibit space, contact Dave Tatman at [email protected] or (270) 349-2355.


Members of the Kentucky Automotive Industry Association,

I write to make you aware the Kentucky General Assembly passed and Gov. Matt Bevin signed right-to-work legislation that may affect you and your employees.

As many in state government, economic development and private industry have said in recent days, this law aims to improve Kentucky’s business climate and attract additional business investment and jobs.
For the automotive industry, this is generally seen as a success, though I recognize we have great union partners in a number of our member businesses.

You can read text of the law, HB1, here.

Please consider the KAIA as a resource for your company going forward and don’t hesitate to be in contact.

Dave Tatman
Executive Director
Kentucky Automotive Industry Association
Email: [email protected]
Email: [email protected]

AutoVision Conference Nearly Sold Out

Ticket sales outpacing last year; more than 250 expected in Lexington

LOUISVILLE, KY (September 6, 201) – The Kentucky Automotive Industry Association’s second annual AutoVision conference is nearly sold out, less than a week before manufacturing leaders gather in Lexington to share insights into one of Kentucky’s signature industries.

AutoVision, a forward-looking conference of automotive manufacturers, suppliers and other business leaders, will be held Sept. 12-13 at the Lexington Center downtown. The event is presented by the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development.

“We’ve built a conference that reaches even more deeply and more creatively into the issues and challenges that make auto manufacturing the beating heart of Kentucky’s economy,” said Dave Tatman, executive director of KAIA. “We enjoyed tremendous positive response from our first conference last year, and we are determined to deliver an even more engaging and energizing AutoVision this time.”

Wil James, President of Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky, Inc. (TMMK) is AutoVision’s keynote speaker.

KAIA moved its signature conference to Lexington to increase capacity and expand its robust exhibit hall.  The move also allowed the conference to offer a free, limited-ticket tour of Toyota’s Georgetown manufacturing facility on Monday morning.

Monday evening’s “DinnerView”, a limited-ticket opportunity for conference attendees to enjoy dinner and cocktails with the conference’s speakers and panelists, is already sold out.

AutoVision’s agenda pushes attendees to reckon with the emerging trends and technologies that will reshape the automotive industry – everything from 3D printing to Internet-connected factory floors to rethinking machine downtime.

Major national automotive leaders Mustafa Mohatarem, chief economist of GM, and Gary Silberg, national sector lead partner of KMPG, return to AutoVision after widely praised presentations at the inaugural conference.  They will be joined by emerging entrepreneurs, engineers, and scholars and other manufacturing thought leaders who will offer provocative, challenging topics for the AutoVision crowd.

Tatman encouraged local manufacturing facilities to snap up remaining tickets quickly.  “We expanded our conference capacity and yet still are outpacing ticket sales compared to last year.  That tells me that our state’s automotive manufacturers and suppliers see the value of this conference to forge the new paths of Kentucky manufacturing.”

This year’s keynote speaker is Wil James, President of Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky, Inc. (TMMK).

Other presentations and panels include:

Greg Haye (above), general manager of Local Motors, and Drura Parrish, CEO of MakeTime, will lead discussions on disruptive technologies in auto manufacturing.
  • “Global Perspective: an economic outlook on the worldwide auto industry,” Mustafa Mohatarem, GM chief economist.
  • “New Kid on the (Engine) Block: Industry innovators designing, building autos,” Greg Haye, Local Motors general manager.
  • “What’s next for 3D printing?” Moderated by David Guilford, Automotive News; panelists include Rick Neff of Cincinnati Inc.; Isaac Mathew, UPS; and Sundar Atre, University of Louisville.
  • “The Clockspeed Dilemma: Responding to the melding of consumer and automotive technologies and the rise of mobile services,” Gary Silberg, KMPG
  • “Wearables on the Factory Floor: JIT in the information economy,” Ankur Gopal, Interapt
  • “The Internet of Cars: Connected technologies are changing drivers’ experiences and expectations.” Moderated by David Guilford of Automotive News; panelists include Alan Ewing of Connected Care Consortium; Chan Lieu of Venable; and Andrew Stess of dashradio.
  • “Factories of the Future: how connected technologies can drive personnel, process and profits in manufacturing”. Tony Fink, iGear.
  • “Changing Faces, Changing Places: how the automotive workforce drives improvements and advances in the production process.” Moderated by Dana Cosby, HRD Strategies; panelists include Jean Marie Thrower, Supplier Development Systems; Tierra Kavanaugh Wayne, TKT Associates; and Lamar Rucker, GM.
  • “Disruptive Drivers: dramatic changes in the supply chain create new opportunities,” Drura Parrish, MakeTime
  • “Understanding international cultures and workforce best practices in a global industry.” Moderated by Bill May, High Value Consulting; panelists include John Nunneley, Hitachi; Torsten Langguth, Dr. Schneider Automotive; and Woody Iddhibhakdibongse, Thai Summit.
  • “Election 2016: the impact of the fall presidential election on the auto industry.” Moderated by Mark Green, The Lane Report; panelists include Curt Magelby, Ford; Ann Wilson, Motor and Equipment Manufacturers Association; and Paul Ryan, Global Automakers.

The full conference agenda is available at http://kyautoindustry.com/AutoVision/agenda.php.

*Media note:  Reporters may register free for the conference.  Contact Kerri Richardson ([email protected] or 502.386.2421) to confirm attendance.

KAIA Launches ‘AutoVision’ Magazine

Publication chronicles crucial and thriving state industry that employs 90,000 Kentuckians

FRANKFORT, KY (July 25, 2016) – No matter what kind of vehicle you drive, chances are good that it has Kentucky fingerprints – everything from wheel axles to sunroofs, and engines to exhaust systems are made right here in Kentucky.  Kentuckians have built vehicles and parts here in the Bluegrass State for more than a hundred years.

AutoVision Magazine

Because Kentucky’s automotive industry is such a crucial part of our state’s economy and the fabric of our communities, the Kentucky Automotive Industry Association has launched its first ever magazine, AutoVision. This quarterly magazine focuses on Kentucky’s surging automotive manufacturing industry, the third largest in the nation. It profiles innovative suppliers, interviews national experts and offers tips to Kentucky managers on how to keep the best employees

AutoVision highlights Kentucky’s leadership in a key national industry and explores the successes and challenges facing Kentucky’s auto manufacturers and suppliers,” said KAIA executive director Dave Tatman. “Whether you’re a plant manager worried about recruiting skilled employees, or an economic development official wondering how national automotive trends will affect local manufacturing, AutoVision has the answers you need.”

The free magazine will be distributed to KAIA members, leaders of automotive manufacturing facilities and their partner firms, elected officials and economic development leaders.

Kentucky’s automotive industry is consistently among the strongest in the nation, and is a vital leader of the state’s economy. In 2015, the state’s auto manufacturing sector:

  • increased production of passenger vehicles by 2.4 percent, to 1.3 million cars and trucks;
  • employed nearly 90,000 people statewide – an increase of nearly 5,000 jobs over 2014; and
  • announced 79 new projects totaling $2.8 billion in investments.

AutoVision shares its name with KAIA’s annual conference, which will be held this year on Sept. 12-13 in Lexington, Ky.  This year’s conference will feature a keynote presentation by Gary Silberg of KPMG on emerging automotive trends such as self-driving cars.  Silberg, the author of “Me, My Car, My Life”, is KPMG’s national sector lead partner for the automotive industry.   AutoVision magazine’s first cover story is an interview with Silberg about how changing demographics and changing technology will affect the future of driving.

Other articles include a recap of KAIA’s spring event, Spark, which connected suppliers with OEM and Tier 1 procurement representatives, reports on the latest new and expanding manufacturing facilities in Kentucky, and a profile of a KAIA member facility.

The magazine is committed to a fall and winter edition for 2016, with quarterly editions beginning in 2017.

If you’d like a copy of the magazine, or information about advertising opportunities, visit http://kyautoindustry.com/autovision-magazine/.

Registration information for the 2016 AutoVision Conference can be found at http://kyautoindustry.com/AutoVision/.


KAIA AutoVision Conference Grows, Welcomes Top Tier Experts

GM chief economist, Local Motors executive among speakers at Lexington event

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 5, 2015) – After last year’s sold-out event, the Kentucky Automotive Industry Association (KAIA) is gearing up for an even larger, more dynamic AutoVision conference this fall. Registration is now open for the second annual AutoVision event to be held in Lexington on Sept. 12-13.

Mustafa Mohaterem
Mustafa Mohaterem

AutoVision 2016 offers a stellar lineup of national automotive leaders, presenting a broad range of topics including changing consumer demands, developing and investing in human capital, and disruptive technologies reshaping the manufacturing industry.

“AutoVision is a phenomenal opportunity for our auto industry leaders to learn from one another, sharing insights about everything from regulations to workforce,” said Dave Tatman, KAIA executive director.  “We’ve built a quality conference that continues to attract top-level speakers and panelists, and this year is shaping up as an extraordinary collection of cutting-edge speakers and topics.”

The two-day event, presented by the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development, includes auto industry leaders such as Local Motors general manager Greg Haye and General Motors chief economist Mustafa Mohatarem.

Local Motors, best known for its 3-D printed car, is an American auto manufacturing company using micro-factories to build cars based on open-source vehicle designs.  Local Motors reflects a new edge of technology-driven manufacturing in the automotive industry.  General manager Greg Haye will discuss Local Motors’ motivation and techniques for producing cars in a revolutionary new way.

Mohatarem has served as the chief economist of General Motors Corporation since 1995, and leads a team responsible for analyzing economic growth trends and vehicle sales worldwide. He will offer an up-to-the-minute global economic forecast for the auto industry and interpret the impact of pressures such as consumer demands and federal regulations.

Main stage speakers and panelists from some of the world’s top automotive manufacturers and support services will discuss topics including workforce development, technology and connectivity, and supply chain challenges.  A session will be devoted to a discussion on the impact of this year’s presidential election on the manufacturing sector.

In its first year, AutoVision’s world-class agenda attracted a sold-out crowd of industry executives, insiders and analysts for a two-day conference and exhibitor hall. The event earned rave reviews from attendees, speakers and exhibitors alike.

For a full list of topics and speakers visit http://kyautoindustry.com/AutoVision/.  Additional speakers will be announced throughout the summer. Premium additional events, such as a tour of the Toyota plant in Georgetown, will be available to a limited number of registrants.

Register now

Last year, AutoVision sold out well in advance of the conference, so attendees are strongly encouraged to register early. Early bird registration (before August 1) saves $50 per attendee.

KAIA AutoVision Conference

Sept. 12-13

Lexington, KY


Save $50 by registering before August 1

Member registration - $299

Non-member registration - $349

Kentucky Auto Manufacturers to “SPARK” Business at KAIA Conference

Louisville Forward sponsors speed networking with top manufacturers

FRANKFORT, Ky.  (April 4, 2016) – Every successful relationship begins with a spark – and the Kentucky Automotive Industry Association (KAIA) is playing matchmaker at SPARK, a new half-day automotive conference in Louisville.

SPARK is designed for Kentucky’s robust automotive supplier sector, particularly procurement and supply chain representatives.

Manufacturers looking for a long-term relationship with that special supplier should try SPARK’s speed-networking session, which matches procurement representatives with potential suppliers for short one-on-one pitch meetings.  The KAIA conference, sponsored in part by Louisville Forward, also includes sessions with industry leaders on timely topics such as diversifying your supply chain and developing export connections.

“One of the benefits of KAIA membership is the continuous networking opportunities with OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers,” said Dave Tatman, executive director of KAIA.  “SPARK will accelerate those potential relationships between suppliers, driving new business and partnerships among Kentucky’s world-class auto manufacturing facilities.”

SPARK’s novel speed-networking opportunity is a must for auto supplier businesses seeking new growth.  A limited number of attendees will meet one-on-one with procurement representatives from Ford, Toyota, Mubea, AGC Automotive, Akebono Brake, Asahi Forge, Hitachi Automotive, Sumitomo Electric, and more.  These speedy sit-downs will give each attendee about 15 minutes to make a connection with the professionals directly involved in materials and services acquisition.  Each attendee is guaranteed at least four matchmaking meetings.

For those who want to hear the latest automotive news and innovations from industry insiders, the SPARK sessions won’t disappoint.  Speakers and panel discussions will cover topics from sparking a supplier relationship to the global automotive economic forecast.

Lindsay Chappell, industry editor for Automotive News magazine, will serve as SPARK’s keynote speaker and panel moderator.  He will be joined by industry leaders including:

  • Michael Robinet, global advisory managing director, IHS Automotive
  • Laura Lyons, president, ATech Training
  • Jean Marie Thrower, CEO, Supplier Development Systems
  • Leonard Fox, COO, VP of operations, Integrated Manufacturing and Assembly
  • Joe Mazzeo, founder and owner, Integrated Lean and Quality Systems

Kentucky’s vast network of automotive manufacturing, supplier and service-related companies provide a significant impact on Kentucky’s economy, adding $14 billion annually to the state’s GDP. With four major auto manufacturing plants, the state is the third-largest producer of light vehicles in the country, topping more than 1.3 million cars, trucks and SUVs last year.

“KAIA is the only professional association designed just for Kentucky’s booming automotive industry, and conferences like SPARK show how KAIA provides real and repeated value to our members,” said Tatman.

SPARK will be held at Noah’s Event Venue at 12451 Plantside Drive in Louisville on Monday, May 23, from 12:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Registration is open at www.kyautoindustry.com/SPARK.

Tickets for the SPARK conference are $100 for KAIA members, $150 for nonmembers.  Ticket packages for the speed-networking session include the SPARK conference and at least four matchmaking meetings, and are $350 for KAIA members, $400 for nonmembers.  The speed- networking option cannot be purchased separately.

Kentucky Auto Manufacturers Continued Driving Economy in 2015

State now has nearly 90,000 auto workers, billions more in investments coming

FRANKFORT, Ky. (February 22, 2016) – Kentucky’s already strong automotive industry continued its growth in 2015 thanks to continued investments by local, state, national and international firms.

The widespread effects of the industry are illustrated by new statistics detailing jobs, investments and production by automakers, parts suppliers and other auto-related manufacturers.

New numbers from the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development show that if lined up bumper to bumper, the more than 1.3 million vehicles produced in Kentucky last year would span more than 4,000 miles. That’s nearly the distance from Frankfort, Ky., to Frankfurt, Germany.

The sustained power and growth of this industry maintained Kentucky’s status as the third-largest producer of cars and light trucks in the country.

But the industry’s economic power is even greater.

The Kentucky automotive industry is one of the strongest in the nation and vital to the state’s economy. In 2015, it:

  • Increased production of passenger vehicles by 2.4 percent, to 1,306,989 cars and trucks;
  • Employed nearly 90,000 people statewide – up from 85,552 in 2014;
  • Increased the number of auto-related manufacturing facilities to more than 480; and
  • Announced 79 new projects totaling $2.8 billion in investments.

For example, Toyota debuted its Kentucky-made Lexus ES 350 in October, which was expected to add about 750 jobs in Georgetown. In December, Ford announced that it would invest $1.3 billion to build 2017 F-Series Super Duty trucks at its Kentucky Truck Plant in Louisville, which is expected to create 2,000 jobs. General Motors announced a total of $483 million in facility upgrades at its Corvette plant in Bowling Green during 2015. A $439 million investment announced in May will bring a new 450,000 square-foot paint shop, among other changes, and a separate $44 million, 36-job investment announced in December will increase production capacity for the Corvette Z06 high-performance model.

Suppliers of automotive parts, services and technologies also announced 75 investments in new or expanding locations, which are projected to create 2,593 jobs, including:

  • a $13.4 million, 145-job project by Dr. Schneider Automotive Systems in Russell Springs
  • a $261 million, 450-job expansion by Bowling Green Metalforming in Warren County
  • an $84.5 million expansion by Robert Bosch Automotive Steering Systems in Florence, expected to add 212 jobs.

“The automotive industry is vital to the state, both economically and culturally,” said KAIA executive director Dave Tatman. “These are products that are made here and shipped all over the world, showcasing Kentucky workmanship to a global audience.”

Tatman noted that an economic impact study completed last year by the University of Louisville Urban Studies Institute showed that the Kentucky auto industry:

  • Contributes more than $14 billion to the state’s gross state product
  • Supports Kentucky families with an average wage that tops $58,000 a year
  • Directly or indirectly supports 1 out of every 18 jobs in the state
  • Ranks first in the nation in per-capita vehicle production

These statistics were recently presented to Gov. Matt Bevin and a newly-formed bipartisan legislative caucus. The Kentucky Automotive Caucus is made up of state lawmakers who have pledged to work with auto manufacturers on key issues such as business-friendly tax policies, technology development and workforce training. Gov. Bevin declared Feb. 2 “Automotive Industry Day” in Kentucky.

“No matter on which side of the political aisle you sit, or whether you drive a Toyota Camry or a Ford F-Series Super Duty truck, a thriving, growing automotive industry is good for the state and good for the families it employs,” said Tatman.


About the Kentucky Automotive Industry Association

The Kentucky Automotive Industry Association (KAIA) was established to advance and promote Kentucky’s automotive industry by providing leadership and creating collaborative partnerships. As the primary state association designed to unite Kentucky’s automotive manufacturers, suppliers and service providers, KAIA serves as a unifying voice that strives to anticipate and address common challenges and achieve shared goals. By creating a forum for best practice sharing, leveraging the expertise of world renowned automotive-related companies, the association seeks to further grow and strengthen the industry across the Commonwealth.

To learn more, visit http://kyautoindustry.com or follow the association on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/kyautoindustry) or Twitter (https://twitter.com/KYAutoIndustry)

KAIA, State Legislators Announce New Automotive Caucus to Support Flourishing Automotive Manufacturing Industry

Industry added new jobs, facilities in 2015

Governor ProclamationFRANKFORT, Ky. (February 2, 2016) – Kentucky’s automotive manufacturing industry is booming, and Kentucky legislators have launched the state’s first Automotive Caucus in order to work directly with the industry to keep the automotive manufacturing sector growing and strong.

This bipartisan group of lawmakers has pledged to collaborate with automotive manufacturers and the Kentucky Automotive Industry Association (KAIA) on key issues in the coming years, including workforce training, business-friendly tax policies, technology development and more.

“When it comes to Kentucky’s automotive manufacturing industry, political party labels don’t apply,” said caucus co-chair Rep. Jim DeCesare of Bowling Green. “This is an industry that employs tens of thousands of Kentuckians and makes products known all over the world. We want to work with these manufacturers to ensure the industry’s ongoing success.”

“Automotive manufacturing is Kentucky’s largest manufacturing industry, and because of our central location, low energy costs, and outstanding workforce, our state is well-positioned to continue its record of success in building the cars and trucks the world wants to buy,” said caucus co-chair Speaker Pro Tem Jody Richards of Bowling Green. “In order to keep Kentucky at the forefront of auto manufacturing, we must work together to ensure these businesses have what they need to maintain that momentum.”

To symbolize the interconnected nature of the state’s auto manufacturing industry, lawmakers assembled a large puzzle of the state which showed industry statistics on each piece. Two out of every three Kentucky counties are home to at least one manufacturing facility, and 20 percent of the state’s exports are tied to the auto manufacturing industry.

As the state’s largest manufacturing sector, automotive manufacturers are keenly interested in developing the next generation of manufacturing workers, and are anxious to work alongside lawmakers, educators and others to develop manufacturing career paths for young Kentuckians. The average wage of an auto manufacturing worker is more than $58,000, and many of those jobs do not require a four-year college degree.

“Today’s manufacturing employee is a problem-solving multi-tasker, with adaptable skill sets in math, electrical engineering, personnel management and software development,” working in teams, collaborative settings, said KAIA executive director Dave Tatman. “KAIA sees real economic opportunities for Kentucky students at multiple levels of education, everything from some post-high school training in a trade all the way up to four-year college degrees.”

Over the last five years, about 340 auto manufacturing businesses have announced new locations or expansions in the state, representing 20,000 new jobs and nearly $4.5 billion in new capital investments. The Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development reported the industry added jobs and new businesses.

  • More than 136,500 people are employed by the auto industry in Kentucky.
  • Kentucky ranks third in the nation in car production.
  • Kentucky ranks second in the nation in light truck production.
  • Nearly 1.3 million cars and light trucks were assembled in Kentucky in 2014.
  • Kentucky exported more than $5.5 billion in vehicles and parts in 2014.

Members of the Automotive Caucus include:

Rep. Rocky Adkins
Rep. Linda Belcher
Rep. Johnny Bell
Rep. Robert Benvenuti III
Rep. Kevin Bratcher
Rep. George Brown
Rep. Tom Burch
Rep. Denver Butler
Rep. John Carney
Rep. Larry Clark
Rep. Hubert Collins
Rep. Leslie Combs
Rep. Will Coursey
Rep. Ron Crimm
Rep. Jim DeCesare
Rep. Mike Denham
Rep. Bob DeWeese
Rep. Jeff Donohue
Rep. Jim DuPlessis
Rep. Joseph Fischer
Rep. Jim Glenn
Rep. Jim Gooch
Rep. Derrick Graham
Rep. Jeff Greer
Rep. Cluster Howard
Rep. Kenny Imes
Rep. James Kay
Rep. Kim King
Rep. Martha Jane King
Rep. Thomas Kerr
Rep. Adam Koenig
Rep. Stan Lee
Rep. Mary Lou Marzian
Rep. Donna Mayfield
Rep. Tom McKee
Rep. David Meade
Rep. Michael Meredith
Rep. Russ Meyer
Rep. Suzanne Miles
Rep. Charlie Miller
Rep. Jerry Miller
Rep. Terry Mills
Rep. Phil Moffett
Rep. Brad Montell
Rep. Tim Moore
Rep. David Osborne
Rep. Sannie Overly
Rep. Marie Rader
Rep. Jody Richards
Rep. Steve Riggs
Rep. Bart Rowland
Rep. Steven Rudy
Rep. Sal Santoro
Rep. Dean Schamore
Rep. Rita Smart
Rep. Diane St. Onge
Rep. Wilson Stone
Rep. James Tipton
Rep. David Watkins
Rep. Gerald Watkins
Rep. Jim Wayne
Rep. Russell Webber
Rep. Addia Wuchner
Rep. Brent Yonts
Rep. Jill York
Sen. Dorsey Ridley
Sen. Dennis Parrett

Kentucky-Made Cars to be First to Drive Across New Lincoln Bridge

Caravan will represent each of Kentucky’s automotive manufacturers

FRANKFORT, Ky. (December 4, 2015) – A caravan of Kentucky-made cars and trucks will be the first vehicles to drive across the new Abraham Lincoln Bridge during Saturday’s public “Walk the Bridge” event in Louisville.

Kentucky Automotive Industry Association executive director Dave Tatman said the bridge opening is an unparalleled opportunity to showcase the state’s soaring auto manufacturing industry at an historic event for the region.

“The Lincoln Bridge is an absolute marvel – beautifully designed, engineered, and built with care by folks who live right here in the region. It makes perfect sense that the first vehicles on the bridge will also be beautiful products made with pride by Kentuckians,” said Tatman. “Plus, the new bridge is an essential link for logistics for our state’s auto manufacturers and suppliers. The Lincoln Bridge will be a vital part of delivering Kentucky’s outstanding auto products to consumers around the country.”

The caravan will begin on the Kentucky side and will carry federal, state and local officials to the formal ribbon-cutting. The caravan will then exit on the Indiana side to complete the trip across the span. Naturally, the first car in the caravan will be Ford’s Lincoln Navigator – a nod to the bridge’s new name.

Thousands of visitors are expected to tour the structure during the “Walk the Bridge” event this Saturday between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. The Lincoln Bridge is expected open to traffic by Monday morning.

Kentucky is home to more than 460 automotive manufacturing businesses, including four major assembly plants. These businesses employ nearly 85,000 people and drive $14 billion in annual economic impact. Kentucky produced 1.3 million vehicles in 2013, ranking the state third in light vehicle production in the country.

The Lincoln Bridge Inaugural Caravan includes:
Ford Lincoln Navigator: A ruby red 2016 Lincoln Navigator built at Louisville’s Kentucky Truck Plant will lead the caravan across the Abraham Lincoln Bridge. The Navigator, North America’s original luxury full-size SUV, has been delivering uncompromising levels of luxury and capability since 1998.

Lexus ES 350: The Lexus ES 350 joined Kentucky’s automotive manufacturing lineup in October 2015, marking the first time a Lexus vehicle has been made in the country. More than 1.5 million training hours and an investment of $360 million went into bringing Lexus’ best-selling sedan on-line in Georgetown, Ky.

Corvette: Known around the world as America’s sports car, the Corvette is the world’s longest-running, continuously produced passenger car with more than 1.6 million produced. When the first Corvette rolled off the line more than 60 years ago, it was born an icon, and GM has continued this reputation for the car with six decades of refinement and innovation. GM began production of the esteemed Corvette at the Bowling Green, KY assembly plant in 1981, and the facility has remained the exclusive home of the Corvette for more than 30 years.

Ford Escape: The Louisville Assembly Plant is home to the redesigned Ford Escape. Every 42 seconds, a new Escape is driven off the Assembly line proudly built by the UAW/Ford employees. Since 2012, Louisville has built more than 1 million Escapes, making it the highest- volume producing plant in North America.

Toyota Camry: The Toyota Camry, America’s best-selling car for 13 years in row, comes out of Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc. in Georgetown and is the product of more than 7,500 Kentuckians. In 2015, Camry was named the most American-made car on the road by cars.com, with 75 percent of its parts sourced in the U.S., and a large percentage coming from right here in Kentucky.

Ford Super Duty: The bestselling truck for 38 years and running, a 2016 F250 King Ranch 6.7L Diesel Super Duty truck is built at the Louisville Kentucky Truck Plant. Just this week, Ford announced it will add 2,000 jobs and invest $1.3 billion to support production of the new aluminum-bodied Super Duty.

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