BMW Highlight Reel

BMW has been in the spotlight recently with unending good news. Here’s a few highlights that have brought lots of positive attention to the economic developing Upstate.

UP SHIFT: BMW Group surpasses global sales record in March

“The BMW Group hit a global sales record in March after selling 240,659 vehicles worldwide, according to the company. The company reported a 3.5% increase in global sales from the same time a year ago.

In the first three months of the year, the BMW Group sold 557,605 vehicles, a 5.9% increase over the same quarter a year ago.

BMW brand vehicles went over the 200,000 mark for the first time in the 100-year history of the company. It was reported that 201,352 BMWs were sold in March. In the first quarter of the year, there were 478,743 BMWs sold, a 6% increase over the first quarter of 2015.”

UP SHIFT: BMW Group launches car sharing service in Seattle

“The BMW Group has officially launched a new car sharing service in Seattle called ReachNow. In addition to the official launch of the service, the company also established ReachNow’s North American headquarters in Seattle and said it plans to expand the service to three more cities in 2016.

The RideNow program in Seattle will feature a fleet of 370 vehicles, including the BMW i3, the BMW 3 Series and the Mini Cooper. The BMW Group billed the new service as “convenient as owning a car … with fast registration and an almost instant approval process – in two minutes or less.” RideNow will expand from downtown Seattle to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in the next quarter.”

Hitt reflects on benefits of BMW to the state

“S.C Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt was on the front lines in 1992 when BMW Manufacturing Co. announced it would open a manufacturing facility in the Upstate. At the time, he was a consultant for the Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough law firm in Columbia that represented BMW. He then worked for 18 years at the German automaker before becoming commerce secretary.

“There are a lot of great stories related to getting BMW here. It was a remarkable recruitment effort,” Hitt said.

Hitt said that at the time BMW came to South Carolina, no European auto company had been successful in the U.S. “and BMW came at a time when car sales were dropping. That was a courageous decision.”

Hitt credits BMW with helping the state attract other original equipment manufacturers, such as Mercedes Benz Vans and Volvo. Also, according to Hitt, of the last 10 auto plants to open in North America, eight were in Mexico, and two were in South Carolina.”

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