According to Bernstein’s analysts BMW will built the new Mini range vehicles at its JV Tiexi plant in Shenyang, north-west China, beginning 2015.
Bernstein, who relies on local sources, said that BMW has already made room at Tiexi to expand production and enlarged the new paintshop to deal with the increased production level. BMW might have chosen to build the new front-wheel-drive family of vehicles in China as demand for the Mini in this region has quickly increased from 2010, the country becoming Mini’s 4th largest global market.
Another reason might be that building small cars in China is easier and cheaper than to import them. For the moment, the Mini models are being manufactured at Oxford and at Magna, Australia. BMW announced that it is going to manufacture the Mk3 Minis at the old Nedcar plant located in the Netherlands, as the facility is no longer used by Mitsubishi.
Analysts predict a ‘big leap’ for the new Mk3 once the model will hit the market at the end of this year. The vehicles manufactured in China are expected to be aimed only at the local market.