SPARTANBURG, SC--BMW says it will invest nearly $900 million and add 300 new jobs in 2012 in its South Carolina plant. This announcement was made during a ceremony to commemorate a major production milestone: 2,000,000 vehicles have rolled off the assembly line since the company began U.S. production in 1994.
Frank-Peter Arndt, BMW Group Board Member responsible for production, revealed the company's intention to expand its X-model family. He revealed that production of the new BMW X4 will occur at the Spartanburg plant, spurring significant investment and job creation necessary to prepare the facility for the new model.
"I am delighted to announce today, over the next three years, we plan to invest nearly $900 Million U.S. dollars. With this investment, we will be able to produce 350,000 units here in the mid-term," Arndt said on Jan. 12, 2012. "This is one reaction to the rising global demand for our BMW X Models."
With the addition of 300 new jobs this year, the plant will raise production capacities up to 300,000 units. By the end of the year, the plant will employ nearly 7,500 people at its more than 4-million-square-foot facility. Since the original 1992 decision to build BMW's only U.S. plant in South Carolina, this announcement brings BMW Group's total investment in the state to nearly $6 billion and represents its largest, single investment to date in its South Carolina plant.
In 2011, the plant produced 276,065 vehicles for more than 130 markets around the world, representing a 73% increase versus 2010. Seventy percent of the vehicles produced (192,813) were exported making BMW the largest automotive exporter to the non-NAFTA countries. Sales of the vehicles produced at the plant have met with continued high demand. According to Arndt, throughout the world, more that 117,000 X3's were sold in 2011 representing a 156% growth of this vehicle versus its predecessor.