BMW unlikely to produce 7 Series in China image

BMW AG is satisfied with its current partner Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Ltd. and will expand its existing business, said Dr. Christoph Stark, president of BMW Greater China.

There is no reason to seek new partners, he added. The words strongly deny the previous saying that the Germany auto giant would join hands with another Chinese automaker Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (Group) (SAIC) in the production of the BMW 7 Series in China, pointed out analysts.

Days ago, BMW and Brilliance China announced in Beijing that they would invest more than CNY 5 billion into their joint venture BMW Brilliance Automotive Ltd. Each will contribute half of the investment.

With the big money, both sides will build a new factory in Shenyang, capital of the northern Chinese province of Liaoning. They are expected to launch the project in 2010, whose potential production capacity will initially stand at 100,000 vehicles a year and jump to 300,000 ones in the future.

The new factory will drive up the output of BMW 3 Series and 5 Series longer wheelbase products. BMW Brilliance now possesses a factory in Dadong District, Shenyang. The venture will seek to bring more new products to the Chinese market.

In the first half of 2009, a new version of the BMW 740Li sedan with a 3.0-liter twin-turbo straight six-cylinder petrol engine officially came to China, and its luxury products are embedded with cutting-edge iDrive control systems, sources said.

The suggested retail price of the new arrival stands at CNY 1.168 million and its luxury version at CNY 1.355 million, according to BMW, a well-known luxury car brand around the world.

Its power unit combines both the twin turbo technology and the High Precision Injection technology, equivalent to the performance of an eight-cylinder engine and the fuel consumption of a six-cylinder engine, told earlier reports.

It takes the sedan only 6.0 minutes to accelerate to 100 kilometers per hour from 0, which is 0.9 minute faster than that for the previous 740Li version. Its fuel consumption reaches 10.0 liters per 100 kilometers on average, 12 percent lower than that of the previous version.

Noably, BMW China announced a sharp markdown of all MINI-branded models in June 2009, the first formal price cutting since the brand drove into the Chinese market in 2003.

In fact, the MINI brand has witnessed a rapid growth in China. Its sales volume jumped from 308 in 2004 to 3,134 in 2008.