A study measuring the economic impact of Kentucky’s automotive industry finds $1 out of every $13 in the state’s economy is tied to the industry.
Governor Steve Beshear joined industry leaders Wednesday in releasing results of a six-month study conducted by the University of Louisville.
"The industry directly employs about 80,000 people and when you add the indirect jobs, it's about 136,000 people all across this state," explained Beshear. "The average salary is about $60,000."
The study was commissioned by the Kentucky Automotive Industry Association, a group formed last year to address the industry’s challenges and to raise its profile.
"While folks think of Kentucky as the home of bourbon and the Derby, most of them don't know that we're the third largest producer of cars and light trucks in the country," Beshear said.
Kentucky is home to the Toyota plant in Georgetown, the Ford plant in Louisville, and the Corvette plant in Bowling Green.
Kentucky’s exports for vehicles and parts were up 28 percent in the first quarter of this year.
The state will host its first automotive conference in September.