Polaris Industries has announced that they will begin construction on a new factory in May of this year in Huntsville, AL. The the 600,000-square-foot plant on a 453-acre site is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2016 and will manufacture Ranger, RZR and Ace utility vehicles. According to reports, operations at the $142 million will include vehicle assembly, chassis and body painting, welding, fabrication and injection molding and employ an estimated 1,700 people full-time when fully operational and potentially 2,000 over time. The average wages are expected to be approximately $18/hr with some highly skilled positions earning $30/hr. Learn more: Al.com
Comment: This clearly indicates that Polaris believes their strong growth in the UTV market to continue. I expect one of the reasons they chose Alabama is the strong market for UTVs in the Southeast and in the Southern tier of the US in general. The location is also puts them closer to the Central and South American markets they have been trying to expand as well, although they also have Mexican facilities to serve these markets. Given that they could have expanded operations in Mexico, I suspect the proximity to the Southeastern US markets might be the primary geographical reason for the location. In addition that area of Alabama has an established manufacturing base and the related skilled work force they need.