American automakers have long struggled to export U.S. made vehicles to overseas markets. BMW, on the other hand, has apparently had no such problem. After 15 years of building cars and SUVs in Spartanburg, South Carolina the company has now shipped over one million cars to overseas markets. That's nearly two-thirds of all of the production from the plant.

When the Spartanburg plant first opened in 1994, it only built 3 series sedans. Within a couple of years, the Z3 roadster was added, followed by the original X5. Ever since the 3 was dropped from the South Carolina production schedule, the plant has been the sole worldwide source for each of the vehicles it has built – a list including the Z3 and first generation Z4. Spartanburg currently builds the X5 and X6. Late this year, an expansion of the plant will bring production of the new second generation X3.

[Source: BMW]
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BMW Manufacturing Announces New Milestone: Exports over One Million Vehicles in first 15 years of South Carolina Plant

* 07.04.2010
* Press Release

Spartanburg, S.C. – April 7, 2010... Since announcing its arrival in South Carolina in 1992, BMW Manufacturing announced today that it has surpassed the export of over one million vehicles, 85% of which have gone through the Port of Charleston. Currently, over 70% of the vehicles produced in Spartanburg are exported to over 120 worldwide markets.

In 2009, BMW commemorated its 15 year anniversary and the production of 1.5 million vehicles. As BMW's only U.S. manufacturing facility, the plant has maintained its commitment to the future of South Carolina by continuing its long-standing partnership with the South Carolina State Ports Authority.

"Our plant continues to be a highly sustainable resource within the BMW Group. The vehicles we produce are driven around the globe and we recognize the vital partnerships we have that enable us to reach our customers everywhere they are. The Port of Charleston continues to efficiently serve our needs to meet ever-changing market demands and they will continue to be a key port for BMW in the future," said Josef Kerscher, President of BMW Manufacturing.

"We deeply appreciate the strong working relationship we have with BMW," stated Jim Newsome, President & CEO of the South Carolina State Ports Authority. "Collaborating with BMW to sustain their economic viability for South Carolina is very important to us."

Through 2009, BMW has invested over $4 billion in South Carolina and employs about 5,000 people at the plant. According to the University of South Carolina's Moore School of Business, who conducted an economic impact study on the plant in 2008, the factory supports 23,050 jobs and generates $1.2 billion in wages and salaries annually within the state. The plant began production of BMW's first full-hybrid vehicle, the BMW ActiveHybrid X6, in October 2009 and its $750 million expansion to build the next generation BMW X3 is nearly complete.

BMW Manufacturing Co.
BMW Manufacturing Co. is a subsidiary of BMW AG in Munich, Germany and is the global producer of the BMW X5 Sports Activity Vehicle and X6 Sports Activity Coupe. In addition to the South Carolina manufacturing facility, BMW North American subsidiaries include sales, marketing and financial services operations in the United States, Canada and throughout Latin America; and a design firm and technology office in California. For more information on BMW Manufacturing, visit www.bmwusfactory.com.