When BMW came to America looking for a place to build its award-winning SUVs, it landed in South Carolina. One of the driving factors pushing BMW, and other foreign automakers like Volvo and Mercedes-Benz to South Carolina, rather than Michigan, the traditional home of American automaking, was that South Carolina is a right to work state with low taxes. If you haven’t already heard about South Carolina’s business-friendly atmosphere, read here:
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South Carolina has worked out well for BMW. In 2019 the automaker produced 411,620 cars at its Spartanburg County, South Carolina facility. Perhaps because of its success in the area, BMW is committed to South Carolina and has invested heavily in the area. David Wren reports for the Post and Courier:
“Our plant’s model portfolio is fresh and popular around the world,” Flor said.
Last year’s record production figure edges the 411,171 vehicles built at the sprawling Upstate campus in 2016. This is the third time the plant has topped 400,000 vehicles in a year, also accomplishing the feat in 2015. The Greer site also maintains its title as the largest BMW producer in the automaker’s network.
BMW has built more than 4.8 million cars and invested more than $10.6 billion at the Upstate campus since its opening in 1994. The site, which employs 11,000 workers, produces more than 1,500 vehicles a day and has an annual capacity of 450,000 vehicles.
BMW also is one of the Port of Charleston’s top customers, exporting about 70 percent of the cars made in the Upstate to more than 125 markets worldwide.
The record 2019 production likely will help BMW retain its title as the biggest U.S. automotive exporter. BMW exported $8.4 billion worth of cars built in the Upstate in 2018 for its fifth consecutive year atop the list. Last year’s export values have not been released.
The automaker said it sold 159,277 Upstate-built cars in the U.S. last year, leaving 252,343 vehicles exported to foreign countries. Top sellers in the U.S. were the X3 and X5.
BMW is a key part of South Carolina’s $27 billion-a-year automotive industry that also includes Volvo Cars and Mercedes-Benz Vans plants in the Charleston region.
Read more here.
E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy
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