The Web for Automotive Professionals & Car Enthusiasts


Related Manufacturing Topics

New Rolls-Royce Manufacturing Plant at Goodwood, UK

The £60 million UK-based investment will create the world´s most exclusive car plant with initially 350 new jobs and an all-new Rolls-Royce luxury sedan from 2003 onwards.

The Rolls Royce Project

BMW's new Leipzig Plant

The BMW Group took the decision to build the new BMW plant in the region Leipzig/Halle. The location is within sight of the Leipzig Trade Fair. The area is about 200 hectares in size and has first-class connections to the motorway, the airport and the railway system.

The new plant in Leipzig, Germany

MINI Plant at Oxford, UK

The new MINI is being manufactured on one of the world's most modern and advanced production systems at the BMW Group plant at Oxford - the result of a £230 million investment programme at the factory.

BMW's new Oxford Plant

New Engine Plant at Hams Hall, UK

BMW's new UK engine production plant at Hams Hall, near Birmingham, was formally opened at a ceremony which brought good news for the British car industry. BMW Group has invested £400 million in the factory, which will build a new generation of four-cylinder gasoline engines for delivery to its car assembly plants in Germany, South Africa and the US.

BMW's Hams Hall Engine Plant



Privacy Statement

© 1998 - 2007 Copyright &

Automotive Intelligence,
All Rights Reserved .
For questions please contact 

BMW Cars     MINI Cars     Rolls Royce Motor Cars 

BMW: Manufacturing Strategy 2007

The Manufacturing Strategy of the BMW Group: Production Follows the Market

The BMW Group concentrates on those premium segments of the automobile market which reflect the character of the respective brand and show an above-average growth potential. In pursuing this policy, the Company focuses on growth and expansion. Growth means growing with the existing model portfolio in all markets where the BMW Group is already active. Expansion takes the BMW Group a step further, launching new products for entering new segments and new markets.

The strategy in production is equally clear and straightforward:

Production follows the Market. Apart from the local production of cars as such, this strategy also serves other purposes:

  • Opening and developing the market: Local production plants facilitate access to new markets with a long-term growth potential.

    BMW pursues this strategy above all in markets which, through high import duties, create barriers to the importation of completely built-up cars, thus preventing any greater penetration of the marketplace. Completely knocked down (CKD) assembly plants on location serve to circumvent this barrier, allowing BMW to offer products at competitive prices. Following the CKD procedure, BMW plants assemble cars on location out of imported parts kits, adding locally produced parts wherever possible to fulfil the respective government’s local content requirements.

    It is inter alia for this reason that BMW has its own CKD plant in Thailand as well as further assembly plants together with external partners particularly in Asia.


Internal production facilities also make sense in major sales markets if sales are not obstructed by customs barriers: A local plant makes the Company a local player, which in turn supports the acceptance of products in the country or region involved.

The positive development of sales figures in the USA, South Africa and Great Britain ever since the establishment of fully-fledged production plants for BMW and MINI cars in the respective countries proves the success of this strategy. In all of these countries the BMW Group builds cars for the world market.

  • Natural hedging: Production facilities and a large purchasing volume in major sales regions with different currencies serve additionally to balance off the flow of goods as well as currency fluctuations and risks.

An efficient, flexible, and agile production network is crucial to the implementation of the principle that “production follows the market”.

South Africa – BMW’s first step in becoming a global player.

Globalisation has been an essential feature of the BMW Group’s corporate strategy for more than three decades: BMW opened its first foreign plant in Rosslyn/South Africa as early as in 1973. Establishing this CKD plant and using local content from South Africa, BMW was able to avoid punitive taxes and therefore offer its products at competitive prices.

BMW Rossly plant, South Africa

In the years to follow the Rosslyn Assembly Plant was developed step-by-step into a fully-fledged production plant, by 1997, comprising the core technologies body construction, application of the paint, and assembly. Today the BMW Rosslyn Plant is an illustrative example of successful penetration and development of the market by way of local production: To begin with, local production and the avoidance of high import duties ensured in this way served to significantly boost sales figures. After having overcome customs barriers and enhancing the plant to full production capacity, BMW has been building the 3 Series Sedan in South Africa for both the local market and worldwide exports. As an acknowledged local player, the South African Plant supports retail sales in the local market, which now accounts for annual customer deliveries of more than 20,000 BMWs in all model series.



BMW production in the USA – the gateway to the world’s largest sales market.

The decision taken in 1992 to build the BMW Group’s own production plant in the USA was an outstanding milestone in the history of the Company.

BMW Spartanburg plant, USA,SC

Up to the year 2004, just 12 years after the decision to build BMW’s new plant in Spartanburg/South Carolina, the BMW Group’s annual sales volume in the USA literally rocketed up from 50,000 to more than 260,000 units of BMW brand cars alone. This outstanding development was fuelled by local production, making the USA the world’s largest single market for BMW cars. Since the plant was opened in late 1994, the original production capacity has more than doubled, now amounting to more than 140,000 units a year.

Developing high-potential growth markets in Asia.

In the ’80s the BMW Group made its first move to Asia, where today, apart from two CKD assembly plants run jointly with external partners, the BMW Group also has its own CKD Plant in Rayong/Thailand.

Since 2004 the BMW Group has also had a plant in China: Here, in the market with the world’s largest growth potential, BMW has entered into a joint venture with Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Limited, building BMW cars in Shenyang for the Chinese market. Like in the USA, BMW is looking at greater penetration of the Chinese market in the long term, not least as a result of local production.

British heritage: Production of the MINI in Great Britain.

The MINI brand has been a highlight of British heritage for more than 40 years – and Great Britain is the largest single market for MINI cars.

The BMW Group’s decision to build the MINI in Oxford is not only a pledge to the identity of the brand, but rather consistently applies the successful strategy that “production follows the market”. With this in mind, the BMW Group will be investing another £ 100 million in Oxford from 2005–2007, preparing the plant in the medium and long term for the demands of both the brand and the market.

New BMW Leipzig Plant: A significant decision and commitment to Germany.

Germany and Europe remain the largest sales region for BMW to this day. And so it was only consistent and correct to build the new BMW plant in Europe. The decision taken in the ongoing process to build the facility in Germany proves that Germany, as an industrial base for production, is still highly attractive despite the high cost of wages and additional expenses in the country. Two other significant factors in this context are the very good infrastructure in Germany as well as the high level of training of the workforce available in the market.

Photos: BMW AG


.Homepage   News   Companies   Management   Events Careers  Guestbook   Search