BMW SpartanburgUS – The OEM will spend $1billion up to 2016 in order to double the annual production capacity at its Spartanburg plant to 450,000 vehicles. According to Norbert Reithofer, chairman of the board of management of BMW, the expansion is intended to meet “strong global demand” for the X models.

Spartanburg is BMW’s centre of competence for X vehicles and currently makes the X3, X5, X5 M, X6, X6 M and now also the X4. Announcing a further expansion of the model line-up, Reithofer said: “With the BMW X7, we are developing another, larger X model, which we will produce at our US plant for world markets.” A plug-in hybrid version of the X5 is also planned for production at Spartanburg.

Reithofer noted that the expansion at BMW Spartanburg, which will increase the workforce by 800 to 8,800, will make the plant the largest in the vehicle-maker’s global production network in capacity terms. Last year it produced 297,326 units.

Harald Krüger, BMW board of management member for Production, added that BMW Spartanburg is “the best example of our successful strategy of  ‘production follows the market’”.