How will the VW scandal impact Chattanooga?

Volkswagen officials assure Mayor Andy Berke SUV is 'critical' to strategy

Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke tries out the front seat of the new Volkswagen Cross Blue.

Calming words about Volkswagen's future in Chattanooga came Tuesday from Mayor Andy Berke, as the company's stock tumbled another 20 percent, VW's "diesel deception" widened to include 11 million vehicles worldwide, and the automaker set aside $7.3 billion to help cover costs and fines.

The widening scandal shouldn't swamp VW's plans to invest $600 million and create 2,000 new jobs to produce a new sport utility vehicle in Chattanooga, the site of VW's only U.S. assembly plant, which currently employs about 2,700 people.

"I spoke with VW leadership earlier today to express my concerns about the current situation and what impacts, if any, it might have on the Chattanooga plant," Berke said in an email Tuesday.