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PressClub USA · Article.

BMW Investing More Than $200 Million to Add New Press Shop at South Carolina Plant.

Spartanburg, S.C. BMW announced today that it will invest more than $200 million to construct a 219,000-square-foot press shop at its South Carolina plant. The investment includes more than 200 new jobs. The announcement was made by BMW Manufacturing President and CEO Dr. Robert Engelhorn at the South Carolina Automotive Summit in Greenville, SC.

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  • Press Shop Will Add More Than 200 Jobs, Stamp Parts for X Models.
  • Three-Year Construction Project Will Start Production in Summer 2024.

Spartanburg, S.C. BMW announced today that it will invest more than $200 million to construct a 219,000-square-foot press shop at its South Carolina plant. The investment includes more than 200 new jobs. The announcement was made by BMW Manufacturing President and CEO Dr. Robert Engelhorn at the South Carolina Automotive Summit in Greenville, SC.

The new press shop, which will start production in the summer of 2024, will take raw coils of steel, cut them into blanks, and stamp sheet metal parts for future BMW models. Those components include hang-on parts such as the vehicle’s four doors, fenders, exterior body sides, and lift gate.

“The BMW Group is known worldwide for the outstanding quality produced by its press shops. We are excited to add this new technology to Plant Spartanburg,” said Dr. Engelhorn. “This investment reinforces BMW’s commitment in the United States and South Carolina. We continue to play a major role in the region’s economic strength as well as workforce development and job training.”  

“BMW’s presence in South Carolina for nearly three decades has driven the dramatic growth of our automotive industry and paved the way to our state’s global reputation as an automotive powerhouse,” said South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster. “This announcement is yet another testament to BMW’s commitment to our state. Congratulations to BMW on their continued success.”

“As the home of BMW’s largest manufacturing operation in the world, we are proud to be a part of BMW’s history and plans for the future,” said South Carolina Secretary of Commerce Harry M. Lightsey III. “BMW is a true steward of their community, and this latest investment in their operations and employees is reason to celebrate. We know that BMW will continue to accomplish great things in our state.”

Highly-Skilled Manufacturing Jobs

A state-of-the-art press shop requires manufacturing jobs with advanced-level training. These jobs include tool and die technicians, electrical and mechanical maintenance for automated machinery, and specialized line operators. More than 45 Plant Spartanburg associates are currently training at BMW Group press shops in Leipzig, Germany, and Swindon, England. These associates also train with partners from the Schuler Group, a globally-recognized company that manufactures automated servo press lines for all BMW Group plants.

“Inside our global production network, we share best practices and train associates to the highest BMW standards. The cross-functional collaboration is part of our BMW culture,” said Karl Loessl, vice president, Body Shop. “This world-class training will allow our associates to work with advanced technologies and systems and support our production of future models.”

Inside the New High-Tech Press Shop

The press shop marks the beginning of the automotive production process. Large steel coils arrive at the press shop, where they are unloaded from trucks using 55-ton overhead cranes. The steel coils are then fed into the Blanking Line, where the steel is cut into individual “blanks” (rectangular cutoffs or special shapes). These blanks are then ready to be fed into the Press Line.

Plant Spartanburg’s Press Line will consist of five press (stamping) stations. The line will be equipped with servo technology, which enables BMW to significantly increase the output performance of the presses.  Using an overhead crane, each station is loaded with the correct press tool (die). The blank is fed into the first press station and transferred from one station to the next by a crossbar feeder robot for additional forming and trimming operations. The press line is capable of running up to 18 strokes per minute. After the parts are stamped, they go to quality control for inspection and are then stacked into racks ready for delivery to the body shop production line.

“Having a press shop onsite is part of BMW’s localization strategy where we produce our major parts at the location where we need them,” said Dr Engelhorn. “This ensures the highest quality, efficiency, and consistency in body shop parts for our customers.”

While Schuler will manufacture the automated press line, all tooling for Plant Spartanburg’s press shop will come from BMW tool shops in Eisenach, Munich, and Dingolfing. 

Since 1992, the BMW Group has invested nearly $12 billion in its South Carolina operations. BMW Manufacturing is the largest BMW Group plant in the world, producing more than 1,500 vehicles each day and 433,810 vehicles in 2021, a record. The plant exports nearly 60 percent of its vehicles to about 120 global markets. For eight consecutive years, it has been the largest exporter by value in the United States. The model portfolio includes five top-selling BMW X models, four Motorsport X models, and two plug-in hybrid electric vehicle X models. The all-new BMW XM, the first electrified high-performance hybrid model in the BMW M portfolio, will begin production in late 2022. The factory has an annual production capacity of up to 450,000 vehicles and employs more than 11,000 people.  

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BMW Manufacturing Co., LLC

BMW Manufacturing Co., LLC is a subsidiary of BMW AG in Munich, Germany, and is the global producer of the BMW X3, X3 M, X5, X5 M and X7 Sports Activity Vehicles and BMW X4, X4 M, X6 and X6 M Sports Activity Coupes.  In addition to the South Carolina manufacturing facility, BMW Group North American subsidiaries include sales, marketing, and financial services operations in the United States, Canada and throughout Latin America; a manufacturing plant in San Luis Potosi, Mexico; and a design firm and technology office in California. For more information on BMW Manufacturing, visit www.bmwusfactory.com.

BMW Group in America

BMW of North America, LLC has been present in the United States since 1975.  Rolls-Royce Motor Cars NA, LLC began distributing vehicles in 2003.  The BMW Group in the United States has grown to include marketing, sales, and financial service organizations for the BMW brand of motor vehicles, including motorcycles, the MINI brand, and Rolls-Royce Motor Cars; Designworks, a strategic design consultancy based in California; technology offices in Silicon Valley and Chicago, and various other operations throughout the country.  BMW Manufacturing Co., LLC in South Carolina is the BMW Group global center of competence for BMW X models and manufactures the X3, X4, X5, X6 and X7 Sports Activity Vehicles. The BMW Group sales organization is represented in the U.S. through networks of 350 BMW passenger car and BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 146 BMW motorcycle retailers, 105 MINI passenger car dealers, and 38 Rolls-Royce Motor Car dealers.  BMW (US) Holding Corp., the BMW Group’s sales headquarters for North America, is located in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey.

Journalist note: Information about BMW Group and its products in the USA is available to journalists on-line at www.bmwgroupusanews.com and www.press.bmwna.com.

 

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