Published on January 9th, 2015 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez


BMW produces their 1 millionth vehicle for the Chinese market

One million vehicles. It’s an impressive milestone, and what’s even more impressive is that BMW’s Chinese production has hit it in just 12 years. With a total of two vehicle production plants operating at full steam, BMW’s production in China has skyrocketed over the last few years. The achievement is even greater when you consider that a lot of the models produced in China are proprietary for the Chinese market, such as the long wheel-base 3 Series and 5 Series models.


BMW cars have been built at a plant in Shenyang in Northeastern China since 2004; the site is operated by a joint venture with Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Limited and solely caters to the Chinese market. Today, the production site in Shenyang comprises the Dadong plant in Northeastern Shenyang, where the BMW 5 Series long version is built, and also a new plant in Tiexi in West Shenyang in the Chinese province of Liaoning, which went on stream in 2012.


The two vehicle plants, Dadong and Tiexi, have a combined maximum production output of 300,000 units annually, which is going to be increased to 400,000 units annually over the next two years. Over the course of the next few years, the BMW Group is going to expand the portfolio of locally produced vehicle models from currently three to then six.


Another part of the Shenyang site is a stand-alone engine plant (Powertrain). It provides the two vehicle plants Dadong and Tiexi with drive systems for the BMW cars produced at these factories. A larger second engine plant that also comprises a foundry (New Engine Plant) is currently under construction; it is scheduled to start operations in 2016.


Founded in 2003, the joint venture BMW Brilliance Automotive produces and distributes BMW cars in China and carries out local development tasks. In the past five years, the BMW Group has invested a total of two billion euros in the Chinese production site. The joint venture employs a workforce of over 14,000 people. In 2014, four years before the end of the contract period, the BMW Group and Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Limited extended their contract for the Chinese joint venture, thus providing the foundation for strengthening the successful existing cooperation even further. The new agreement has a term of ten years, from 2018 to 2028.


China is definitely the country to look to for investing over the next few decades or so. Despite the rather strict regulations when it comes to foreign car manufacturers setting up shop and the rampant piracy, the gains of producing for a Chinese market are massive- so much so that many companies engineer and produce models specifically for the Chinese domestic market.

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