After over a year of speculation, BMW is finally officially announcing that it's building a factory in Mexico. The new plant will cost the German automaker roughly $1 billion US and will have a capacity of about 150,000 vehicles a year when complete. However, production won't begin there until 2019.

The new factory is being built near the city of San Luis Potosí, Mexico, with plans to employ about 1,500 people. Unfortunately, BMW is still mum about which models it's producing south of the border. Earlier rumors indicated the possibility of the 3 Series, 1 Series and maybe even Mini models there.

BMW says Mexico's multiple free trade agreements are a major factor in the choice of location of the plant. They make it possible for the automaker to ship models more cheaply to North America, parts of South America and the European Union. "The Americas are among the most important growth markets for the BMW Group. We are continuing our strategy of 'production follows the market,'" said Harald Krueger, the board's head of production, in the company's official announcement.

The Mexican factory comes on the heels of two other major North American investments for BMW. In March, it declared its plan to invest $1 billion by 2016 into the Spartanburg, SC, factory to increase its annual capacity by 150,000 units and to build the X7 SUV. Its Moses Lake, WA, carbon fiber factory is also getting a further $200 million investment. Plus, there's its roughly $260 million facility coming to Brazil, as well. Scroll down to read the full release about the Bavarian automaker's latest American factory.
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BMW Group to build new plant in the NAFTA region; Mexican state of San Luis Potosi chosen as location

Investment of roughly one billion US dollars
Capacity of around 150,000 units per year
Start of production planned for 2019
Harald Krueger: Decision underscores commitment to the NAFTA region


Munich/Mexico City– July 3, 2014... The BMW Group will build a new plant in Mexico in close proximity to the city of San Luis Potosí in the state of the same name. This move is in line with the company's clear strategic policy of ensuring globally-balanced growth.

"Mexico is an ideal location for the BMW Group and will be another important plant within our production network. We will invest one billion US dollars in the new production site over the next few years. Production is planned to start in 2019 and during that year, the workforce will reach around 1,500 people," said Harald Krueger, member of the BMW AG Board of Management, responsible for Production.

Over the medium term, several thousand jobs will be created on the plant site and in the surrounding area. The company will announce which BMW models will be built at the San Luis Potosí location at a later date.

"This decision underscores our commitment to the NAFTA region. We have been building BMW cars at our US plant in Spartanburg for the past 20 years. With a planned annual capacity of 150,000 units for the new plant in Mexico, the BMW Group will be even better positioned to take advantage of the growth potential in the entire region," Krueger said. "The Americas are among the most important growth markets for the BMW Group. We are continuing our strategy of 'production follows the market'," he continued.

The company made the announcement at the "Los Pinos" Official Residence of the President in Mexico City today. The ceremony was attended by Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, Mexican Secretary of Economy Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal and the Governor of San Luis Potosí, Dr. Fernando Toranzo Fernández.

Mexico as a competitive manufacturing location within the NAFTA region
The large number of international free trade agreements – within the NAFTA area, with the European Union and the MERCOSUR member states, for example – was a decisive factor in the choice of location. Other crucial advantages were the highly-qualified local workforce, a solid network of established suppliers and the well-developed infrastructure. The BMW Group has maintained good relations with Mexican suppliers for many years and purchased products worth 1.6 billion US dollars locally last year.

The BMW Group has operated a local sales company in Mexico since 1994 and sold a total of 13,992 vehicles in the country in 2013. This represents an increase of almost 18.3).

BMW Group investment in the NAFTA area
The BMW Group already announced a further investment of one billion US dollars at its existing plant in Spartanburg, USA back in March of this year. This will increase that plant's annual production capacity to up to 450,000 vehicles by the end of 2016 and make Spartanburg the largest plant in the BMW Group's international production network.

A further 200 million US dollars will be invested to expand the joint venture carbon fiber plant in Moses Lake, Washington. This will triple local production capacity over the long term, making the Moses Lake plant the world's largest carbon fiber manufacturing facility.

The BMW Group will invest a total of 2.2 billion US dollars in the NAFTA region in the period up to 2019.

In parallel, the BMW Group is currently building a plant in the state of Santa Catarina in Brazil. The start of production for the Brazilian plant is scheduled for later this year.

With plants in the US, Mexico and Brazil, the BMW Group will have extensive production capacity at key locations in North and South America.

Addendum:
Information on the plant is available immediately at the www.bmwgroup-plant-sanluispotosi.com website. The website also includes contact details and the opportunity to apply for a career with the BMW Group through online registration.

The BMW Group
With its three brands BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce, the BMW Group is the world's leading premium manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles and also provides premium financial and mobility services. As a global company, the BMW Group operates 28 production and assembly facilities in 13 countries and has a global sales network in more than 140 countries.

In 2013, the BMW Group sold approximately 1.963 million cars and 115,215 motorcycles worldwide. The profit before tax for the financial year 2013 was € 7.91 billion on revenues amounting to approximately € 76.06 billion. As of 31 December 2013, the BMW Group had a workforce of 110,351 employees.

The success of the BMW Group has always been based on long-term thinking and responsible action. The company has therefore established ecological and social sustainability throughout the value chain, comprehensive product responsibility and a clear commitment to conserving resources as an integral part of its strategy.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 36 Comments
      • 5 Months Ago
      Why did you guys think Mexican build cars are bad quality? Mexico is the 8 car producer in the world. Manufacturing processes of BMW as well as their quality are the same (supposedly) in every part of the world they produce their cars, is just more cheaper to do so here and there. I don´t know if you guys are familiar with Quality Control, but are all the actions, tools made ​​to detect the presence of errors. Trust me BMW will apply it.
      Patrick
      • 5 Months Ago
      Are a lot of the parts going into these vehicles going to come from Mexican and European suppliers? Sure. But just as the S.C. Plant (also getting a cool $1 Billion USD investment) gets a ton of parts from US suppliers, you can bet a lot of parts are going to come from Tier 1 suppliers based in the good ole' US of A. 10 Years ago it looked like the future of manufacturing would inevitably all go to Asia. Now every manufacturer you can shake a stick at is announcing plans to built in North America (yes that is often going to include Mexico)...and you know what, I wouldn't be surprised if you see a lot more S.C. Built BMW SUVs in San Luis Potosí when executives down there want to buy a big trucklet made by their employer (or their client for executives of Tier 1s and 2s). So which is the better approach to take here people?: 1. Gee this is gonna create a lot of jobs in the US and Mexico...and maybe do a little something something to raise wages and the standard of living in our Southern Neighbor, through, you know, economic development ( name a better way to curve illegal immigration, or take away the lure of joining the organized crime gangs that feed America's demand for drugs) OR 2. GRRRRRRR..."Mexicans!!!!!!"...GRRRRR...* Weeping and Gnashing of Teeth*...."I'd never ride in a Mexican made car!!!" (said just before they catch a plane at the airport with GE Turbines made in Mexico o_0 ).
      Gator
      • 5 Months Ago
      I can care less where it is built, as long as the quality is good.
      Stridenttube
      • 5 Months Ago
      I will not buy a BMW made in Mexico. If it's not made in Germany I will not buy another 3 series.
      NY EVO X MR GUY
      • 5 Months Ago
      BMW = By Mexican Workers. O'lay!!!
      • 5 Months Ago
      AS BEFORE - IN THE 1930'S and 1940's GERMANY CLICKS ITS HEELS AND SPITS ON AMERICA'S MILITARY WHAT ELSE IN NEW ? WHILE AMERICA (EXCEPT FOR OBAMA OF COURSE) IS TRYING TO EXERT PRESSURE ON MEXICO TO FREE THE U.S. MARINE THEY HAVE TAKEN HOSTAGE - THE GERMANS "REWARD" MEXICO WITH A GIANT FACTORY. AND WHENEVER IT COMES UP, AMERICA IS ALWAYS SUPPOSED TO "FORGIVE AND FORGET" WHAT GERMANY DID IN WORLD WAR II. AS WE HAVE SAID BEFORE - AMERICA SHOULD BOW OUT OF NATO IN WESTERN EUROPE AND LET THE FRENCH AND GERMANS FEND FOR THEMSELVES REGARDING DEFENSE AGAINST RUSSIA. IF THE GERMANS DON'T CARE ABOUT OUR U.S. MARINE THAT MEXICO HAS TAKEN HOSTAGE, WHY SHOULD AMERICA CARE ABOUT GERMANY ? Matt Lechner Chairman - WSSIG, the Wall Street Special Interest Group "supporting and growing America's interests in the global capital markets" 4714026@optonline.net
        Patrick
        • 5 Months Ago
        This happened a couple of years ago, when an ex US serviceman went into Mexico with an antique shotgun, got treated like crap, and was eventually released due to pressure from US Congressmen and local Mexican business men. Thing is, if I'm a Cartel "security consultant", I just found a great pipeline to run guns into Mexico. Find a US serviceman or woman who' has family with financial or health problems and offer them good money to smuggle weapons back for you....and if they get caught?: "Hey don't worry, your Senator will just go down to Tijuana and just browbeat Mexican law enforcement...THEY ALWAYS BACK DOWN, you'll be scott free!". This poor dude didn't screw the pooch with a family heirloom shotgun, he had some sweet modern weaponry in his car. I don't doubt it was an honest mistake, and I don't doubt that at first some underpaid low level Mexican law enforcement minions did the asshat routine on him. Now however, this has some serious attention on the issue, and there is probably a serious Mexican prosecutor thinking : "If we back down again, next time its going to be a partially disabled Silver Star winner with six .50 cal Barrett Sniper rifles!" Hopefully Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi get a fair trail, and considering how many US and Mexican officials are following the case, the prosecutor and judge would have to be pretty stupid not to run things as immaculately as possible.
      poopoohead100
      • 5 Months Ago
      This wouldn't bother me as much if this meant that BMW could sell their cars for less money, but they're going to keep gouging consumers while spending less money on manufacturing. Raking in the dough.
      Caleb
      • 5 Months Ago
      If American workers were willing to do the job for $8/hour with no benefits, then BMW may have a put an additional plant here.
        AronD
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Caleb
        I guess you missed the part about BMW investing another billion dollars in Spartanburg NC, and 200 million in Washington. By 2016 Spartanburg will be BMW largest plant. BMW is also the USA largest exporter of cars.
      AlBongo
      • 5 Months Ago
      BMWs made in the US and now Mexico? Jesus, I guess I'll have to travel to Europe to buy actual, well made German cars. Now BMWs will come with two new-car smells; Buffalo chicken wings and/or fried bean tacos.
      UnderdogSupporter
      • 5 Months Ago
      Congress needs to get on it and open up free trade with Europe for cars. These are potentialLy US jobs that we are losing to Mexico. Yet people in the US are still going to purchase these vehicles.
        UnderdogSupporter
        • 5 Months Ago
        @UnderdogSupporter
        Pretty soon, Mexico is going to challenge the United States on annual motor vehicle production.
        LW
        • 5 Months Ago
        @UnderdogSupporter
        LOL, it is because of NAFTA that allowed this to happen.
      Nicholas
      • 5 Months Ago
      I'm sorry, but when it comes to cars, provenance is a big deal for me. Nothing against hardworking Mexicans, but if I'm going to drop $40k+ on a BMW, it had better be assembled somewhere near Munich.
      herrstreet
      • 5 Months Ago
      Built by Mexican Workers?
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