BMW is seeking the approval of the government of China to upgrade its annual production capacity by 80% to 360,000 automobiles from 200,000 units. BMW Brilliance Automotive Ltd., the automaker's joint venture in the country, has two plants in Shenyang, specifically the Dadong and the Tiexi facilities.
The joint venture, which is a 50-50 partnership of Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Ltd. and BMW, manufactures the vehicle models X1, 5 series and 3 series. According to the Ministry of Environmental Protection, BMW Brilliance is seeking to expand its Tiexi facility's capacity to 200,000 vehicles from 100,000 units. The ministry will mull over the factory's potential effect on the environment of Shenyang.
In January, BMW Brilliance also sought the government's approval to raise capacity of the Dadong plant from 100,000 units to 160,000 units. The country has been BMW's biggest market from among other regions in the world. From January to April 2012, the automaker was able to sell 107,211 locally built and imported automobiles in China, an increase by 35 percent on a year-on-year basis.
Expansion in China, which is also the largest vehicle market in the world, is crucial to the vehicle manufacturer's sales target of 2 million cars and SUVs by 2016. In 2011, the BMW Group achieved sales of 1.67 million units around the world. [source: Autonews]