A NEW headquarters for car giant Audi will be built on the outskirts of Chelmsford, creating more than 100 jobs.
The luxury car manufacturer hopes to build by the A12 in the north east of the city on a site called Generals Farm.
The base would be right next to the planned new town of Beaulieu, which will see 3,600 homes built alongside a business park and £22million railway station.
The HQ will be one of only nine in the country.
It will feature a modern show room with offices, meeting rooms and even a car workshop and inspection facilities.
The existing Audi dealership on Dukes Park Industrial Estate would take on another car franchise as part of the plans.
Councillor Neil Gulliver, in charge of economic development in Chelmsford, said the job creation is exciting.
He said: "I'd love to see a big international company like Audi setting up in Chelmsford, and I'd like to think that between us we could make it happen.
"The planned business park at Beaulieu will be by the train station and that could bring thousands of more jobs to the city.
"Chelmsford was recently listed as the second best place in the country for business to relocate to. There are a lot of jobs coming to Chelmsford, its amazing really."
He added: "I welcome the concept of the hub, but I'm not 100 per cent sure on the location. It's right between Chelmsford and Boreham so it's a sensitive area, as well as being close to the Grade One listed Boreham House.
"I'd love to see it happen, but perhaps in another part of the city."
Plans submitted to Chelmsford Council, describe the land as brownfield in a poor state and of little vegetation.
Access to the site would be on the Main Road B1137 which currently serves the farm, Premier Inn hotel and Boreham House.
An Audi spokesman said: "We are delighted that, in conjunction with its network partner Group One Automotive, Audi is focusing on Chelmsford as a prime location for its new regional sales hub.
“The enhanced Chelmsford Audi will enable us not only to showcase our extensive range far more effectively to prospective customers, but also to deliver a more streamlined service to existing Audi drivers in the area.”
Work on building the first on 3,600 homes in the new town is due to start this month.
The development, known as Beaulieu, will eventually see the homes built between the A130 and A12, as well as shops and leisure facilities, a hotel, plus “business developments and edcational bases”.
As part of the development, Beaulieu will provide a new relief road connecting it with the A12 and the site for a new mainline railway station on the East Anglian main line, due to be developed by Network Rail.
The station will be funded by developer Countryside Zest.
Beaulieu was recently given a boost when it was announced that it would benefit from a share of £1billion of government money set aside to accelerate the building of new homes across the UK.