The result of a joint venture between Kenyan importer DT Dobie and the Wolfsburg-based firm, a reported 5 000 units are expected to be build per year from 2017 at a plant located in the city of Thika near the capital Nairobi, operated by Kenya Vehicle Manufacturers.
It also means that the German marque now has a manufacturing presence in three countries African countries following the re-opening of its Lagos plant in Nigeria last year.
In addition to Vivo production, which also sees Volkswagen returning to Kenya for the first time since Beetle assembly ended in the 1960s, local training centres will be established to qualify production workers and further skills development. A basic training programme for young people in industrial skills is expected to commence at a later stage.
"We are taking the successful Polo Vivo from South Africa to Kenya to leverage the enormous growth potential of the African automobile market and participate in its positive development. This compact model is the best-selling car in the Sub-Saharan region, so it is the ideal entry model for the promising Kenyan market," Volkswagen South Africa Managing Director and Chairman, Thomas Schaefer, said at the signing ceremony attended by Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.
"With this move, we are strengthening the brand's overall position in Africa and taking an important step towards expanding our commitment in the region".