Just a a day ago, when I first read that Frank Weber, Chevrolet Volt lead engineer turned Opel executive, it got my mind thinking. Likely some sort of internal politics? Disagreement on strategies? Well, it seems to be the case that BMW is taking its commitment to electric thinking very seriously and going for the jugular.
Reports right now are indicating that it was in fact BMW who has hired Mr. Weber away from Opel. Mr. Weber will be working directly under BMW’s head of research and … CONTINUED
The BMW Group sold more vehicles in March than ever before in a month. The company sold a total of 165.842 BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce brand vehicles in the past month, not only significantly exceeding the figure for March of last year (141,717 units / +17%) but also the previous sales high of 152,721 vehicles recorded in December 2007. The BMW and MINI brands also set new monthly records.
The company also achieved a new high for the first three months: Sales started the year stronger than … CONTINUED
New management responsibilities at BMW M GmbH and MINI brand
Friedrich Nitschke to head BMW M GmbH
Kay Segler takes over MINI brand management
Dr. Friedrich Nitschke (56) will take over as managing director of BMW M GmbH effective 1 May of this year. Nitschke was previously responsible for the MINI Series within the Development division, and has held various management positions in the Controlling and Development divisions since joining the company in 1978.
The current managing director of BMW M GmbH, Dr. Kay Segler (56), will be responsible for … CONTINUED
In yet another example of how the Apple iPad is changing the world of business and retail, Autonews has an interesting article on how the iPad has and will soon likely speed up the lease return process at BMW dealerships throughout the country – something which will make the experience more pleasant for customers and more efficient for dealers.
The iPad lease return pilot program is currently in place at sixteen dealerships. According to BMWFS, the results so far have been encouraging and makes it more likely … CONTINUED
CNN Money has posted FORTUNE’s list of the world’s most admired companies. The general non-industry specific list is compiled from a survey of businesspeople from all industries. The industry-specific list (i.e. Motor Vehicles category) is derived from a survey of each specific industry, according to peer companies.
BMW tops the Motor Vehicles sector and was voted as the No. 1 Most Admired company by their automotive industry peers. Volkswagen group was No. 2 and Daimler No. 3. In terms of global companies overall, BMW ranked No. 19. … CONTINUED
BMW is currently among the top 3 automakers closest to making their European Union mandated CO2 targets. They are currently #3 and follow Toyota and PSA/Peugeot-Citron. BMW needs to cut its overall fleet emissions by only 7.1 percent in order to meet the more onerous emissions regulations which begin next year. Toyota needs to reduce by only 4.2 percent, and PSA by 5.1 percent.
BMW has been able to be far ahead of the curve on meeting the targets through a combination of offering increased diesel efficiency … CONTINUED
The BMW Group and Sixt AG are planning a unique and innovative car sharing venture. With effect from April 2011 onwards – initially in Munich and later in Berlin – the two companies intend to join forces in offering a modern mobility concept under the brand-name DriveNow; this new product will combine vehicles and service of the highest quality with simple, flexible usage. DriveNow is the first car sharing concept to place an emphasis on efficient premium vehicles and comprehensive service. Vehicles may be hired and … CONTINUED
The BMW Group has achieved new record highs for revenues and earnings in 2010, with revenues climbing by 19.3% to euro 60,477 million (2009: euro 50,681 million) and the profit before tax (EBT) jumping to euro 4,836 million (2009: euro 413 million). The Group reports a profit before financial result (EBIT) of euro 5,094 million (2009: euro 289 million) and a record net profit for the year of euro 3,234 million (2009: euro 210 million).
In the light of this strong performance, the Board of Management and … CONTINUED
In a surprising move last week, Volkswagen acquired an 8% stake in SGL Carbon SE, with whom BMW has a joint venture for production of carbon fiber for the BMW i models. While BMW and Susanne Klatten (one main BMW shareholder) is watching this closely, Financial Times Germany now reports that VW is trying to play this move down as an investment and backs their claim by waiving a seat in SGL Carbon’s Supervisory Board. “That’s out of question,” a VW Spokesperson told FTD and went … CONTINUED
The BMW Group’s sales growth continued to be solidly in the double-digit range in February. A total of 111,720 BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce vehicles were delivered to customers (prev. yr. 91,763) – an increase of 21.7% compared to February 2010 and setting a new record high for the month. For the year to the end of February, sales volumes were 24.7% higher than in the first two months of the previous year, at 216,911 units (prev. yr. 173,913).
According to Ian Robertson of BMW, the company appears to be targetting annual i3 sales of at least 30,000 units by drawing a production target comparison to lower-volume Mini models (such as the Clubman, of which 30,000 were sold globally in 2010). Meanwhile, the i8′s pricing remains to be determined, based on future legislation (and no doubt any tax breaks for green vehicles).
The BMW i3 launches in 2013 and the i8 shortly after, with both models to be built in BMW’s Leipzig plant.
More info on i3, … CONTINUED
BMW CEO Norbert Reithofer said this week at Geneva that the company was “surprised” by Volkswagen’s move to take an 8% stake in SGL Carbon SE, with whom BMW has a joint venture for production of carbon fiber. However, he added that that BMW’s joint venture with the carbon-based products maker is expected to be unaffected by the deal, at least for the time being.
BMW plans greater use of the lightweight but strong carbon fiber material carbon fiber in its future vehicles. BMW and SGL planned … CONTINUED
The BMW Group and PSA Peugeot Citroën plan to invest 100 million EUR in their intended joint venture on hybrid technology named “BMW Peugeot Citroën Electrification”, both companies announced at a press conference in Geneva today. The new company will operate out of two locations – the greater Munich area, Germany and Mulhouse, France. 400 employees are expected to work for the joint venture by the end of 2011. Subject to approval by the relevant competition authorities, the new company is expected to launch its operations … CONTINUED
The BMW Group in the U.S. (BMW and MINI combined) reported February sales of 19,919 vehicles, an increase of 10.8 percent from the 17,971 vehicles sold in the same month a year ago.
“In a market affected by some nasty weather, the BMW and MINI brands continued their sales momentum led by some great new products,” said Jim O’Donnell, President and CEO of BMW of North America, LLC. “The recently launched X3 and MINI Countryman are showing good strength in the market.”
BMW Brand Sales
Sales of … CONTINUED
Saturday evening saw the launch of teaser communications for the new BMW sub-brand. Light installations and video projections illuminated BMW Group buildings around the Petuelring road in the north of Munich. The four-cylinder building, BMW Welt and BMW Museum were bathed in the colours of BMW i.
The new BMW sub-brand itself was launched at today’s press conference in the BMW Welt. The print campaign for BMW i will initially feature two motifs.
As of Tuesday, a giant poster at the Munich Opera house and on other squares … CONTINUED
BMW of North America, LLC today announced its annual Center of Excellence honors, awarded to the top performing dealerships in the U.S. Thirty-two of the 338 BMW dealers nationwide achieved “2011 Center of Excellence” status based on high customer satisfaction, outstanding brand representation, operational excellence and profitability.
The BMW dealer network continues to invest in their sales and service facilities spending nearly $3 Billion in the past decade. Dealers recognize the benefits of continuously improving their business processes and focusing on delivering top-tier customer service to keep … CONTINUED
The BMW Plant in Leipzig continues to grow. Back in November, we reported that BMW invests € 400 million to expand the plant for the production of the Mega City Vehicle. Today, DB Schenker announced to build a new logistics center to supply components for the BMW plants in China and South Africa. This will not only improve the supply for these plants but also create 600 new jobs in Leipzig.
The BMW Group started the new year well, with strong sales growth of 28%. A total of 105,177 BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce brand automobiles were delivered to customers worldwide in January (prev. yr. 82,150).
Ian Robertson, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, responsible for Sales and Marketing: