Where are BMW Cars Manufactured? Production Plants Around the World

Where are BMW Cars Manufactured

Luxury vehicles like BMWs are associated with expert engineering, cutting-edge technology, and high performance. But where are these impressive cars actually produced?

BMW manufactures its luxury car models primarily in Germany, China, South Africa, and the United States. The company operates large-scale, highly automated plants that assemble hundreds of thousands of vehicles per year.

In this in-depth guide, we’ll cover all of BMW’s major production facilities around the globe. You’ll learn:

  • BMW’s main car manufacturing plants in Germany, China, South Africa, and the USA
  • Which BMW models are made at each factory location
  • How many cars BMW produces annually
  • The company’s approach to sustainable manufacturing

By the end of this post, you’ll have a full overview of BMW’s worldwide manufacturing operations. Now let’s take a closer look at where these coveted German vehicles are made.

BMW’s Main Automotive Production Facilities

BMW has 31 manufacturing facilities spread across 15 countries around the world. This includes vehicle assembly plants, engine factories, and component manufacturing sites.

The company’s largest automobile production sites are located in:

  • Germany – BMW’s home country and base of operations since 1916. Major plants are located in Dingolfing, Munich, Regensburg and Leipzig.
  • China – Joint venture plants with Brilliance Auto in Shenyang catering to the huge Chinese market.
  • South Africa – The Rosslyn plant near Pretoria has made BMWs since 1968.
  • USA – BMW’s Spartanburg, South Carolina factory is its largest globally.

Next, we’ll go through BMW’s main production hubs country-by-country:

Germany: Birthplace of BMW

As a German brand, it makes sense that BMW’s largest and most important manufacturing sites are in Germany.

The company’s flagship plant is in Dingolfing, Bavaria. This massive factory opened in 1967 and now produces over 900 vehicles per day. Thousands of employees work around the clock on 3 shifts to assemble BMW 7 Series, 8 Series, and M models.

Other major BMW factories in Germany include:

  • Munich – Makes engines and the i3 electric city car.
  • Regensburg – Produces around 1,500 BMWs daily including the 1 Series hatchback.
  • Leipzig – Manufactures the 1 Series, 2 Series, i3, and i8 hybrid sports car.

BMW uses renewable hydroelectric power for manufacturing at the Dingolfing, Regensburg, and Leipzig plants. Sustainability is a priority across their German production network.

China: Catering to a Growing Luxury Market

China is BMW’s largest single market today. To meet booming Chinese demand, the company operates large joint venture plants with local automaker Brilliance Auto in the city of Shenyang.

BMW Brilliance Automotive has two major production sites:

  • Tiexi – Makes BMW 3 Series, 5 Series, X1, and more. Opened in 2012.
  • Dadong – Started production in 2018 producing additional 3 Series vehicles.

Combined, these factories manufacture over 700,000 BMWs per year for the Chinese market. The partnership with Brilliance Auto has allowed BMW to capitalize on the rapidly growing luxury auto segment in China.

South Africa: Exporting to Africa and Beyond

BMW has a long history in South Africa stretching back to 1968 when the Rosslyn plant near Pretoria first opened.

This factory produces over 60,000 units of the BMW 3 Series sedan annually. Many of the vehicles built in Rosslyn are exported across Africa, Asia, North America, and Europe.

The South Africa plant provides easy access to key right-hand drive markets like the UK, Australia, India, Japan and South Africa itself. BMW exports over 80% of South African-made vehicles.

USA: BMW’s Largest Plant Worldwide

BMW opened its first full manufacturing facility outside Germany in 1994 in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

The Spartanburg plant has expanded over the years and is now BMW’s largest globally. It produced its 5 millionth vehicle in 2021.

This huge factory makes BMW X crossovers including:

  • BMW X3
  • BMW X4
  • BMW X5
  • BMW X6
  • BMW X7

BMW takes advantage of South Carolina’s skilled workforce and proximity to the busy port of Charleston to export around 70% of SUVs built in Spartanburg.

Having a US plant provides benefits like avoiding steep import tariffs and shortened delivery times to American customers. It also gives BMW a “made in America” halo.

Where Each BMW Model Line is Produced?

In addition to the major plants above, BMW manufactures vehicles across a global production network based on expertise, costs, and proximity to buyers.

Here is a quick rundown of where each BMW model series is primarily built:

  • 3 Series – Germany, China, India, Mexico, South Africa
  • 5 Series – Germany, China, India, Thailand, Malaysia
  • 7 Series – Germany, China
  • X models (SUVs) – Germany, China, South Africa, USA
  • Electric i models – Germany
  • Rolls-Royce – England

BMW can shift production of models between plants based on factors like exchange rates, demand fluctuations, and new trade policies.

For example, BMW recently moved production of the 3 Series from South Africa to Mexico and China to be closer to buyers in those markets.

Having flexible, globally distributed production avoids supply chain bottlenecks and disruption risks. It also reduces costs and environmental impact of transporting vehicles long distances.

How Many Vehicles Does BMW Produce Per Year?

As a whole, the BMW Group produces around 2.5 million vehicles per year across its automotive brands:

  • BMW – Around 2.2 million cars annually
  • Mini – Over 300,000 units per year
  • Rolls Royce – 5000 ultra-luxury vehicles

BMW’s largest model line by volume is the popular 3 Series, which accounts for about 30% of total BMW brand sales.

The company’s SUV models like the X3, X5 and X7 make up over 40% of output as buyers continue to favor crossover designs.

As one of the world’s leading premium auto manufacturers, BMW has the production capacity and reach to build millions of vehicles each year for global distribution.

BMW’s Approach to Sustainable Manufacturing

Building millions of vehicles worldwide uses substantial resources and energy. BMW aims to minimize its environmental impact through initiatives like:

  • Renewable Energy – Using solar, wind, and hydropower at factories.
  • Recycling – Reusing materials, recovering waste heat, and treating wastewater during production.
  • Plastic Reduction – Eliminating all single-use plastics from manufacturing.
  • Lightweighting – Using carbon fiber and innovative steels to make vehicles lighter.
  • Hydrogen Power – Piloting hydrogen fuel cell trucks for deliveries between plants.

BMW is working to achieve carbon neutrality across its production network by 2050. Its state-of-the-art factories showcase how auto manufacturing can become more sustainable.


BMW has major production sites in Germany, China, South Africa, and the USA that assemble millions of vehicles per year. The company combines German engineering excellence with a flexible, global approach to manufacturing.

Strategically located factories in key markets help BMW build models close to customers while maintaining high levels of quality control. As demand evolves and new technologies emerge, BMW will adapt its worldwide production system.

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