BMW adds South American plant, first car produced

Josh Bennis

BMW Group has today celebrated assembling its first car at its new assembly plant in Araquari, Brazil. The facility is also set to get a new body shop and paint shop, due to be constructed by September 2015. The first car to be produced from the factory was a BMW 328i ActiveFlex.

BMW 3 Series Araquari Brazil plant

Covering an area of 1.5 million square-metres, BMW says the new plant further helps its global production network, which also includes 30 other assembly and production sites in 14 countries around the world.

Harald Kruger, member of the management board of BMW AG responsible for production, said,

‘The new plant in Brazil will be an important element in our international production network and will make a significant contribution to the BMW Group’s profitable and globally balanced growth. Our strategic principle of ‘production follows the market’ has previously proven effective in countries such as the US and China and will also ensure our success in Brazil, an important future market.”

BMW plans to use the plant to produce the MINI Countryman, BMW 1 Series 5-door, 3 Series sedan, X1, and X3. It will also use the facility to undertake logistic activities, as well as administrative and auxiliary infrastructure.

The facility is part of a 200 million Euro investment by BMW, creating 1300 new jobs, with 500 employees already on board. BMW says the plant has the capacity to move up to 30,000 vehicles annually.

BMW Group automobile plant Araquari

Gerald Degen, head of BMW Group Araquari plant, said,

“The centerpiece of the training centre is an assembly line. It was created specifically for training purposes and complies with our global BMW Group production standard. And it is the ideal place for us to thoroughly prepare our associates for their work on the real production line. This training allows us to build cars according to our highest quality standards, which are the same worldwide, be it in Germany, China or here in Brazil.”

The plant is located in the southern part of Brazil and will work in conjunction with other BMW infrastructure located at nearby Joinville. BMW also builds motorcycles in Manaus, located in the State of Amazonas.

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