BMW 3 millionth vehicle

From left, BMW manufacturing associates Thomas Watson, Pamela Shaw, Dawn Burgess, Shirley Scott and President and CEO Manfred Erlacher stand with the 3 millionth BMW produced at the plant in Upstate South Carolina.

SPARTANBURG - In a special ceremony at its Spartanburg plant on Tuesday, BMW celebrated its 3 millionth vehicle to roll off the line.

The vehicle, a Donington Grey Metallic X5 M with Mugello Red Full Merino leather seats and Carbon Fiber interior trim, was driven by Dawn Burgess, Associate #433, hired in 1994. Burgess presented the keys to the milestone vehicle to Manfred Erlacher, president and CEO of BMW Manufacturing.

“The growth of this plant has been quite extraordinary,” Erlacher said. “Today, as we witness another historic moment, I am delighted to announce that BMW’s profound impact in South Carolina continues. I am grateful for our dedicated associates and their commitment to building premium vehicles for the world.”

The three millionth BMW will be prepared for shipment to a customer in Kristianstad, Sweden.

Guest speakers at the event included South Carolina Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt and Jim Newsome, president and CEO of the South Carolina Ports Authority.

“For over 20 years, BMW has been a catalyst for the exponential growth of our state’s auto sector, which today includes companies in 40 of our 46 counties,” Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt said. “But beyond our borders, it’s a point of pride for our workforce that now three million world-class, quality-made vehicles have been delivered for the global market – from right here in South Carolina.”

In February 2015, the U.S. Department of Commerce confirmed that BMW is the largest U.S. automotive exporter of passenger vehicles by value. With an annual value totaling $9.2 Billion, BMW’s single plant in South Carolina exceeded exports from Michigan, Alabama and California. In 2014, nearly 250,000 vehicles were exported from its South Carolina plant, more than 70 percent of the plant’s total volume.

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