Mini Poised for Investment Injection
18th February, 2005
The BMW Group will be investing over £100 million (c AUD $250 million) at the sole manufacturing plant for Mini brand cars, Plant Oxford between now and 2007.
The substantial cash injection will add around 200 new production jobs.
Much of the investment will be in further optimisation of the production capacities, mainly in a new body shell production building and in further modernisation of the paint shop.
By laying the foundation stone for the body shell production building, which will cover about 15,000 m2, Dr. Norbert Reithofer, Member of the Board, Production, at BMW AG, today signalled the start of preparation for Mini production to meet the future requirements of the brand and the market.
“These measures will allow us to react even more flexibly to the high demand for Mini throughout the world. At the same time, we are increasing our flexibility as regards the production of the various Mini model variants", said Reithofer.
Since launch in 2001, more than 500,000 Mini brand vehicles have been produced, far exceeding the initial projections of around 100,000 cars a year.
In 2004, 189,492 cars rolled off the Oxford production line which has been working two shifts and seven days a week to keep up with demand for some time.
At present more than 4,500 employees work at Plant Oxford.
To keep up with escalating demand from every Mini market around the world, engineering and production staff have been continuously optimising the manufacturing and assembly process.
In addition to efficiency programmes, innovative working time models with flexible shifts mean that the factory can produce cars for 134 hours a week.
Mini production at Oxford is running at full capacity and has been so since full stream production commenced in 2001.
Since 2000, the BMW Group has invested a total of £280 million in the production of Mini vehicles in Oxford.