The end of a special era
The start of the X-era
After 35 years, the last BMW 3 Series Sedan rolled off the production line today at BMW Group Plant Rosslyn in Pretoria. The plant has produced a total of 1,191,604 units and five generations of the BMW 3 Series. One in four BMW 3 Series Sedans of the current generation come from BMW Group Plant Rosslyn.
“We look back with great pride over an extraordinary career path of the production at Plant Rosslyn. Over the years, the development of our production and export programme has been the catalyst for our sustainable growth and contribution to the South African economy,” says Tim Abbott, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of BMW Group South Africa.
In the next few months, Plant Rosslyn will launch the production of the BMW X3. In the future, the BMW 3 Series Sedan will also be manufactured at the new BMW Group plant in San Luis Potosí, Mexico.
Bidding farewell to the BMW 3 Series at BMW Group Plant Rosslyn
One of the key milestones of the BMW 3 Series has been the success in founding the segment of the modern sports sedan, establishing itself as the embodiment of driving pleasure in its segment and becoming the world’s top-selling premium car.
The enthusiasm for this model series was also shared by the production staff who expressed their passion for these cars by giving them legendary nicknames. Each generation of the BMW 3 Series produced at Plant Rosslyn had its own nickname: the third generation, for instance, was called “Dolphin” for its elegant contours. Limited edition models of the BMW 3 Series, such as the BMW 333i and 325iS, also emerged from the plant.
In June 2015, BMW Plant Rosslyn was awarded the Platinum Plant Quality Award in the J.D. Power 2015 Initial Quality Study (IQS). This award made Plant Rosslyn the best plant in the world in the Initial Quality Study 2015.
BMW X3 instead of BMW 3 Series
With the production of the new BMW X3 in the coming months, a new era will begin at Plant Rosslyn. In November 2015, BMW Group South Africa reaffirmed its long term commitment to South Africa by announcing that it will invest a total of R6 billion at Plant Rosslyn. The investment – one of the biggest in the local automotive industry – has enabled Plant Rosslyn to get ready to produce the new BMW X3. In October 2017, an additional R160 million was invested into the Rosslyn manufacturing facility to enhance production line speed.
Stefan Hülsenberg, Director of BMW Plant Rosslyn, explains:
“The enhancement has raised the maximum production capacity to 76 000 units, leaving the plant with excellent potential in the future to produce the highest volume ever in its 45-year history. Plans to create a center of production excellence at our plant are well under way with the largest infrastructure upgrade in the history of the facility now completed and staff upskilled in state-of-the-art technologies.”