DINGOLFING – A TOWN WITH A STRONG AUTOMOTIVE TRADITION.
Today, BMW Group Plant Dingolfing is one of the BMW Group’s 30 production sites around the globe. The plant’s history began in 1967 when BMW took the first major steps beyond the city limits of Munich for its automotive production – the start of an expansion of production capacities that continues to this day.
The initial skepticism of the former Glas staff quickly gives way to a new spirit of optimism: initially, BMW AG transfers the production of aggregates as well as axle, exchange and spare parts to Dingolfing. Over the next few years, the production of axle carriers and guides, levers and shafts, as well as exhaust and brake systems follows. The Goggomobil is discontinued only in 1969; BMW AG takes over a major share of the work contracts of the former staff of Hans Glas GmbH.
NEW PLANT ON GREENFIELD SITE.
With the BMW 6 and 7 Series joining Dingolfing’s production program from 1977 onward, the site continues to grow: a new press shop is set up in former Eicher factory buildings in 1972; in 1978, the groundbreaking ceremony for the new administration building takes place and a new high-bay storage facility at Plant 2.2 (central parts delivery) is commissioned.
In 1975, the site reached the magic mark of 100,000 BMW cars produced. At the end of the decade, Dingolfing can already look back at half a million vehicles made.
ON ROUTE TO BECOMING THE MOST FLEXIBLE PLANT.
To satisfy the growing demand for BMW cars made in Dingolfing, a second assembly hall, Hall 52, is commissioned in 1981. One year later, in 1982, the magic mark of one million vehicles produced is passed; only five years later, the plant celebrates five million vehicles produced.
Besides the wide product range, the 1980s at Plant Dingolfing are characterized by innovations in products and production processes. In 1983, the BMW 524td as the first BMW car with a diesel engine rolls off the assembly line. In the second-generation BMW 7 Series and the new BMW 8 Series, which continues the tradition of large BMW coupes from 1989 onward, the first 12-cylinder engines are fitted. Innovations in the production process, such as pre-assemblies and the introduction of tilt assembly, ensure efficient workflows and ergonomic improvements for the workers. The site’s headcount increases to over 20,000 staff by the end of the 1980s.
The new administration building is inaugurated.
TAKING ON THE BEST IN THE WORLD.
The middle of the decade is marked by important model changes: 1994 sees the launch of the third-generation BMW 7 Series and 1995 the launch of the fourth-generation BMW 5 Series, Dingolfing’s high-volume model. At the end of the decade, the BMW 8 Series is discontinued after 10 years and more than 30,000 vehicles produced. In turn, the production of the Z8 begins. The luxury roadster is assembled in Munich, but due to its strong aluminum expertise Dingolfing delivers the respective car bodies.
Over the course of the 1990s, Dingolfing receives several awards to honor the site’s high quality standards. In 1992, the component plant 2.1 is voted ‘Factory of the Year’; one year later, the vehicle plant receives the Bavarian Quality Award. Awards by the renowned U.S. market researcher J.D. Power follow in 1995, 1998 and 1999. J.D. Power infers the quality rating of automotive factories from customers’ satisfaction with new vehicles. In 1988, Plant Dingolfing is honored for its outstanding product quality with the Platinum Plant Award as the ‘World’s Best Automotive Factory’.
Milestones in production are the introduction of the both innovative and environmentally friendly powder-based paint technology in the paint shop in 1997 and the commissioning of the world’s largest suction bar transfer press in 1999.
The magic mark of four million BMW cars produced is reached.
BEGINNING OF A NEW ERA.
In 2007, it’s time to celebrate 40 years of BMW in Lower Bavaria and seven million BMW cars made in Dingolfing. The next generation of the BMW 7 Series is launched in 2008, a new BMW 5 Series variant, the BMW 5 Series Gran Turismo, one year later. Again, Plant Dingolfing is honored repeatedly with J.D. Power Awards for its delivery quality all throughout the decade.
Toward the end of the 2000s, the global financial crisis affects the car markets and thus also Plant Dingolfing. Production output drops significantly in 2009, to below 200,000 vehicles per annum. For a brief period, the plant introduces reduced working hours.
Just like in the previous year, the plant wins the J.D. Power Bronze Plant Award.
At over 300,000 units, Plant Dingolfing achieves the highest annual production output in its history.
The Central Parts Delivery Center (ZTA) in Dingolfing is expanded; the new Dynamics Center takes up operations in June.
Dingolfing receives the J.D. Power Silver Plant Award in October.
In March, Plant Dingolfing produces its seven-millionth vehicle.
The fifth generation of the BMW 7 Series is launched.
Dingolfing starts to produce the BMW 5 Series Gran Turismo.
The plant receives the J. D. Power Silver Plant Award.
NEW MODELS, NEW TECHNOLOGIES.
In late 2012, a major, multi-year plant expansion begins. With the so-called ‘westward expansion’ the plant prepares for future model generations and new technologies. Among the new facilities are a new body shop and a new CFRP production. Both are commissioned in 2015, with the launch of the new BMW 7 Series. Surrounding assembly, a new delivery center, a new automated small-parts storage and optimized traffic and material flows ensure that the site can manage the continuously increasing complexity.
With the new BMW 7 Series and its mix of materials – aluminum, steel and CFRP – the BMW Group and Plant Dingolfing set new standards in intelligent lightweight construction. On top of that, the site makes its mark as a center of excellence for the production of electric drive components. Due to the extensive aluminum expertise of Plant 2.1 and its experience in prototyping with alternative drives, the site has been providing Plant Leipzig with high-voltage batteries, electric transmissions and aluminum chasses for the BMW i electric models since 2013. From 2014 onward, construction is under way at Plant 2.2 for a new production facility for electric drives and high-voltage batteries to be fitted in future BMW Group plug-in hybrids.
The vehicle plant celebrates a production anniversary: 8 million BMW cars made in Dingolfing.
Plant 2.1 receives the Future Award in the ‘Factory of the Year’ competition for its new axle differential assembly, which meets age-related needs of the workers.
The production facility for high-voltage batteries for the BMW i models is symbolically commissioned.
The ‘westward expansion’ of vehicle plant 02.40 begins.
Plant 2.1 sees the start of production of components for the BMW i3.
The site celebrates 40 years of BMW in Dingolfing.
Production of the new BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe begins.
J.D. Power votes BMW Group Plant Dingolfing to be Europe’s best car factory.