BMW has announced it will invest $900 million over the next there years to expand its Spartanburg County, SC, plant. The project is expected to generate 300 jobs.
Frank-Peter Arndt, the BMW Group board member in charge of production, said the company intends to expand its X-model family, and that the Spartanburg facility will manufacture the new BMW X4.
"With this investment, we will be able to produce 350,000 units here in the mid-term," he explained. "This is one reaction to the rising global demand for our BMW X models."
With the addition of the 300 new jobs, in 2012 the plant will raise production capacities up to 300,000 units and employ nearly 7,500 people by the end of the year.
"Two million vehicles have prepared our team well to meet the new opportunities that lie ahead for our plant," said Josef Kerscher, president of BMW Manufacturing. "We look forward to a new model with great anticipation."
This announcement brings BMW Group's total investment in South Carolina to nearly $6 billion, and represents the firm's biggest single investment to date in this particular facility.
Since 1994, the SC plant has undergone four major expansions and produced six different BMW models (and their variants): the 318i, Z3, Z4, X5, X6 and X3. In 2011, it produced 276,065 vehicles for over 130 markets around the world; a feat representing a 73 percent increase from 2010. The fact that 70 percent of the vehicles produced were exported makes BMW the largest automotive exporter to non-NAFTA countries.