Atlanta’s Auto Boom

By on Feb 12, 2018 in News

Within the past 5 years, metro Atlanta has welcomed multiple international automotive companies. The rise of the automotive industry results in additional commercial development for the growing region.

PSA Group

PSA Group, parent company of Citroen and Peugeot, is the newest arrival to Atlanta. Automotive News reports that the French automaker is already recruiting in the with hopes of opening its American headquarters in February.

For a company that is opening its doors next month, PSA Group has been silent about the details of the site. It is safe to say that the headquarters will not be new construction, though details of the deal in one of DeKalb County’s existing high-rise have not been forthcoming.

PSA Group products will not be available until 2026. The company is currently in its development stages, focusing primarily on US compliance standards and market research.

Analysts are anxious to see if the arrival of PSA Group will stimulate growth seen near other automotive developments.


The 200,000-square-foot Mercedez-Benz headquarters, on the other hand, is hard to miss. Groundbreaking took place in 2016 and the building is scheduled for occupation in March.

Roughly 1,000 employees from the temporary headquarters in nearby Dunwoody will relocate to the new 12-acre site in the spring. The aesthetic of the $93 million building, located in the suburb of Sandy Springs, champions  simplicity: clean lines, a muted color palette, and bright spaces. The structure, mostly glass, was inspired by biophilic design.

“No person sitting in this building will be more than 30 feet from daylight,” says Gensler Principal Stephen Swicegood of MBUSA.

The headquarters will be equipped with a fitness center, and a day care center with extensive outdoor playground. Adults can play in the walking trail nestled amongst nearly 800 trees.

“We’re very pleased to have a premiere company such as Mercedes-Benz decide to call Georgia and the Atlanta area home,” said Gov. Deal in the press release. “We’ve already seen so much out of their corporate citizenship, and I have every reason to believe that is going to continue.”

In addition to creating 800 new jobs, MBUSA continues to contribute to the economic growth of Sandy Springs and Dunwoody.


Porsche blazed the trail for PSA and Mercedez-Benz. The Porsche headquarters highlights revenue generation, which offers additional opportunities to local businesses and individuals.

The $100 million headquarters is called Porsche Experience Center for a reason. It’s more than an office building. The property possesses a 1.6-mile road course that passes through the main office space. A technical and muddy off-road coarse is also available. Consumers can test drive any Porsche under the knowledgeable guidance of one of 40 professional driving instructors employed by the facility.

Porsche Experience Center contains a high-end restaurant, vintage car restoration center and retail shop.  The Human Performance Center, open to Porsche employees and the public, puts participants are under the care of Exos professionals. Exos trains NFL athletes and Navy SEALS.

In total, the Porsche Experience Center brings 400 jobs the Atlanta in addition to its new platforms for shopping and entertainment.

Beyond the Axles

Beyond the commercial construction opportunities, the presence of the automotive industry brings a wealth of new talent and job opportunities to the region. The automotive presence has even saved local towns from financial inertia.

Before the arrival of Kia Automotive, the city of West Point was known for its small yet robust military academy. For decades, few new businesses opened their doors in the small town, leading to economic stagnation and an exodus of young talent.

After the construction of the $1.6 billion Kia plant in 2009, the town is now called Kia-ville–with mixed sentiments from the locals. The 2,200-acre industrial park employs 3,000 people and sparked growth.

The Kia agreement arranged for the city of West Point received $800,000 per year between 2009-2014 and about $181,000 until 2025. The development authority received a lump sum of $650,000 for economic development. Troup County received a $3, 450,000 grant for a career academy within the county’s existing school system.

Along the corridor leading to the industrial park, multiple chain retailers, restaurants, and day cares completed construction and opened their doors.

Atlanta ranks 10th in Forbes 2017 list of top cities for economic growth with a projected growth rate of 3.5 percent between 2011-2016.