With the first quarter of the new year behind us, preparations are well underway for the production of the BMW X3 at Plant Rosslyn. We look back at the highlights so far.

The building of the state-of-the-art Bodyshop at BMW South Africa’s Plant in Rosslyn is set to be the biggest expansion in the local automotive industry to date, and only reaffirms the Group’s lasting commitment to developing the BMW South Africa brand, the country and its people.

“Our passion for perfection at Plant Rosslyn has demonstrated that we are highly competitive within the global BMW production network both in terms of cost of production and quality. We are excited about the future prospects of Plant Rosslyn, and cannot wait to start with the production of the next generation BMW X3” said Tim Abbott, CEO South Africa and Sub-Sahara.

The long-term R6 billion investment is a breath of fresh air for the local economy. And what a breath it is, with the BMW X3 being the most iconic, and coveted model in the BMW X range.

A glimpse of the future

When complete, the new Bodyshop will build on the green principles of its predecessor, will span an impressive 26 000m2 (around 50% larger) and house around 300 robots, all with the specific purpose of crafting the BMW X3.

“We now have new electric Material Handling Equipment (MHE), which has replaced our previous ones that operated in gas. This is fantastic for our Plant as it will generate less pollution and improve our environmental friendliness. We are truly a world class plant,” said Thato Mabuyela, Process Supporter from Logistics.

And contributing to the global success story of the BMW X3, will be the BMW South Africa associates who will undergo advanced skills training and assessments to be up to the task.

“I am fascinated. I find that our new working environment has improved drastically to what we had before. The newly installed machines are much more efficient. For example, at Assembly we have a machine that does both dyno and ABS at the same time,” commented Trevor Maseko, an associate working for the Assembly Plant and who has also been with the company for almost 35 years.

The new Plant Rosslyn

Work on the plant was already in full swing before the end of year shutdown which included the installation of a new stacker in Plant Rosslyn, with only two other Combined Body Stackers operational in the BMW Group Production Network. There was also the issue of a higher vehicle, which meant higher ceilings – a challenge which our engineers have met with ease.

When associates returned after Plant closure, the electrical, fire and mechanical commissioning was complete. They were ecstatic to return to a fully-fledged Assembly Plant. The Dust Bowl was completely transformed. A whopping 670 additional parking bays were constructed of which 120 bays are equipped with charging stations for hybrid and all-electric vehicles.

Thanks to the tireless work of everyone involved in the expansion, we are on track and in high gear ahead of the official production of the South African built BMW X3.

Would you be interested in a Plant Tour once the upgrades have been completed? Let us know in the comments below: