The Sun reports that most German of British brands– I mean British of German brands– is set to build cars outside The Land of Hope and Glory. The paper reckons BMW will manufactur its MINI SUV in Graz, now that the plant's X3 production is headed stateside. A spokesperson for the propeller people said the MINI brand's geographical locus will remain in Oxford, as both the fast-selling standard car and the sure-to-be-a-hit Clubman greet the world from Southeast England. In fact, the factory is maxxed-out at 260k units per annum. Hence the move to the Fatherland. In a related story, Motortrader reports that most Kuwaiti of English car brands, Aston Martin, is also looking to craft vehicles abroad, beginning with the four-door Rapide. Bidders for the work read like a who's who of outsourcing: Italy's Pininfarina, Germany's Karmann, Austria/Canada's Magna and Finland's Valmet.
the best thing they could do would be to get all of the britishness out of it. i'd prefer that it runs every day.
Katie, Do you think that Mini buyers really care where the car is assembled? BMW has built a successful brand with Mini. When I tell people that BMW is the company behind the Mini, this is generally well received. German car companies are simply using their brand equity to leverage more sales. I guess I'm just confused, do you also have a problem with Coach bags assembled in China?
Katie, let them Austrians do it. At least, they have a long, well-kept tradition (google for Austro-Daimler, Porsche's first job, or Steyr Daimler Puch) for building all kind of cars. But perhaps it's a long-term strategy by BMW? Replacing the Union Jack with a Tyrolean hat in marketing? Given the interior of the Mini, what could possibly go wrong?