Germany's new Megacity EV by BMW
7th November, 2010
The BMW Group is expanding its plant in Leipzig to
make it the first location in Germany equipped to handle the large-scale production of
zero-emission electric cars. In the period up to 2013, around €400 million will be invested at the
plant in new buildings and machinery for the production of the Megacity Vehicle (MCV). The plant
expansion was launched on Friday by German Chancellor Dr Angela Merkel and Dr Norbert Reithofer,
Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, together with the Prime Minister of the German state
of Saxony, Stanislaw Tillich, and the State Governor of Washington (USA), Chris Gregoire.
“By producing the Megacity Vehicle in Germany the BMW Group is demonstrating a clear
commitment to Germany as a high-tech location. With this vehicle we are revolutionising automotive
design and production, and offering our customers the first purpose-built electric vehicle for
urban areas. This will be the world’s first volume-produced car with a passenger compartment made
from lightweight CFRP, as less weight enables a longer range,” explained Reithofer. “We
made a conscious decision to produce the car in Germany, at our plant in Leipzig – our newest and
most cutting-edge facility with the most flexible structures,” he added.
Including production of components, the BMW Group and the joint venture set up with the SGL
Group for the manufacture of carbon fibres are investing a total of €530 million in the project.
The beneficiaries of this investment are the BMW plants in Leipzig and Landshut and the joint
venture facilities in Wackersdorf and Moses Lake (Washington, USA). The BMW plant in Dingolfing
will produce important components for the drive system and chassis of the MCV.
A new dimension in sustainability
The BMW Group is placing great value on sustainability throughout the value chain for the
Megacity Vehicle. This approach extends beyond the emission-free operation of the vehicle itself.
Indeed, the BMW Group has also set itself ambitious aims with regard to environmental protection
and the preservation of natural resources when it comes to production. For example, the
company’s target is to bring its energy requirement down by 50 per cent and reduce water usage by
70 per cent per vehicle. The company is aiming to ensure that 100 per cent of the energy it uses
comes from renewable sources. These figures are based on a comparison with the current values of
the BMW Group production network.
Ongoing build-up of expertise in the area of electromobility
The BMW ActiveE – based on the BMW 1 Series Coupé – will roll off the production line at the
Leipzig plant in 2011. This vehicle represents the BMW Group’s second step, after the MINI E,
towards putting an emission-free electric vehicle into series production. The knowledge gained
with the MINI E and BMW ActiveE is channelled directly into the series development of the MCV.
All of which means that from 2011, Leipzig will be a centre of expertise for the production of
electric cars within the BMW Group’s worldwide network.