BMW has opened a new extension of the Dadong plant, under its Chinese joint venture BMW Brilliance Automotive Ltd (BBA).
The plant will simultaneously launch production of the BMW X5 with an extended wheelbase in its new extension, exclusively for the Chinese market. The X5 has so far been manufactured only at the BMW Group’s US plant in Spartanburg.
BMW says the new plant expansion provides additional production capacity globally.
“Despite the challenges of the past three years, this complex construction project was completely completed on schedule,” says Milan Nedelkovic, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG Productions. “Our Chinese production sites are of great importance to the BMW Group. Last year, nearly one out of every three BMW Group cars delivered worldwide was built in Shenyang.”
Besides the newly launched BMW X5, Plant Dadong produces the BMW 5 Series and X3 model for the Chinese market. It is also the only facility that manufactures the all-electric BMW iX3 for the global market.
Together with BBA’s second facility, Plant Tiexi, it produced a total of more than 700,000 vehicles last year, making Shenyang not only the largest manufacturing site for BMW Group but also the largest premium manufacturer in China. The Tiexi plant produces the BMW 1 and 3 Series models as well as the BMW X1 and X2. In the summer, the new plant, Plant Lydia, will open and be home to the new BMW i3, an all-electric 3-Series made exclusively for the Chinese market.
With a local power plant, which makes combustion engines as well as high-voltage batteries, Shenyang will be home to four production facilities. Extensive research and development work is also carried out there. Since 2010, the BBA joint venture has invested about CNY 83 billion in factories, facilities, projects and research and development activities in Shenyang.
In its updated form, Plant Dadong now covers 910,000 square meters – the equivalent of about 125 football fields. It contains a press workshop, a body shop, a painting, one rooftop integrated logistics and an assembly building with two independent production lines. The body shop is equipped with KUKA’s largest titan robot with a loading capacity of 1.3 tons to grip the lower body.
BMW says more investment has also been made in the area of sustainability. Nearly 80 percent of prefabricated vehicles in Shenyang are transported wholly or partly by rail. With nine railway lines, Dadong has the largest railway station of all BMW Group plant structures. The press workshop provides a clean separation of aluminum and steel scrap for the spinning, which greatly contributes to reducing carbon dioxide emissions even further. BMW maintains that Plant Dadong’s paint shop has already achieved zero fresh water consumption, and energy efficiency is set to be increased further.
The solar array in Dadong plant has also been upgraded. This year, panels with an area of 179,000 square meters are expected to produce more than 21 megawatt-hours of energy from renewable sources. BBA Shenyang production base now has a covered area of 290,000 square meters of solar panel system, and ranks first in Liaoning Province. In addition, the plant has introduced additional charging points in the parking lots for employees to charge their vehicles.