BMW Makes HUGE Investment In China For Electric Vehicles – iX3 And Mini Electric
– $4.7 billion investment announced towards battery production with CATL
– BMW iX3 crossover to be built exclusively in China with BMW Brilliance Automotive
– Mini electric to be made in Oxford (UK) and China with Great Wall Motor
BMW have decided to make the iX3 and the Mini electric in China and made a massive investment towards the development and production of their future electric vehicles. The manufacturer has been sourcing batteries from Samsung but a new deal with China’s CATL might change that. CATL are China’s largest battery manufacturer and they’re also setting up a plant in Europe to cater to the European carmakers.
According to Electrek.co, The German automaker’s investment was earlier believed to have been $1.16 billion towards CATL’s cause. But, BMW have confirmed that the deal is worth $4.7 billion. This will help grow CATL’s production capacity, which currently stands at 17.5 GWh and will soon be at 24 GWh.
The iX3 was unveiled only a few months ago while the Mini electric concept was revealed almost a year ago in 2017. BMW’s joint venture in China, BMW Brilliance Automotive (BBA) will commence production of the iX3 crossover in 2020. The made-in-China Mini electric will come out of BMW’s 50:50 joint venture with Great Wall Motor. The two manufacturers haven’t revealed a timeline for production but the Mini electric will start rolling out of BMW’s Oxford plant next year. It is also backed by the Chinese and the German governments which shall enable BMW to build over half a million vehicles in China next year; and exclusive production rights for the BMW iX3 electric crossover SUV.
About the development, Harald Krüger, chairman, BMW board of management, said:
“Today’s signing represents a new chapter in the success story of our BMW Brilliance Automotive joint venture. Our agreement sets a long-term framework for our future in China – a future involving continued investment, further growth and a clear commitment to the development and production of electric vehicles. The next chapter of our cooperation has the potential to go beyond our existing motto – in China, for China. The all-electric BMW iX3, produced by BBA from 2020, will find customers around the world.
The strategic partnership (with Great Wall Motor) is a clear win-win, enabling us to contribute to China’s ambitious plans to ramp-up new energy vehicles and reduce emissions in the mobility sector,”
Chinese Automobile market has clearly gained great importance from the BMW Group among other automakers, as the company reportedly sold almost 560,000 vehicles there last year alone, making it the single largest market for the Bavarian Luxury carmaker. BMW already has a battery factory in China, hence full-scale electric vehicle production is a logical next step.
(The article is written by Mahesh Yadav. He is a car enthusiast and always look forward to new tech. He loves it when a great blend of the two shows up.)