BMW says that it is hiring 2,000 more people at its Dingolfing factory for jobs in electrification in a push to ’emerge winner’ in the auto industry’s transition to electric and autonomous vehicles.
Ilka Horstmeier, the new director of the BMW Group’s Dingolfing plant, made the announcement this week:
“We want to, and will, emerge as a winner in our industry’s technological transformation. And we will continue to pioneer future topics such as e-mobility and autonomous driving. We will increase the number of Dingolfing-based jobs in the production of e-drive components several times over in the next few years – to a total of up to 2,000.”
BMW hasn’t launched a new all-electric vehicle since the BMW i3 back in 2013, but it is preparing a few new entries in the space.
The iNEXT is considered to be the German automaker’s next big step in electrification and it will be the first all-electric vehicle to be produced in Dingolfing.
Horstmeier commented on the vehicle:
“The BMW iNEXT brings together all key automotive technologies: it is fully electric, fully connected and highly automated. It is the technology flagship for the future of the entire BMW Group. And we are proud that this car of the future will be built here at our plant.”
The company says that “extensive investments are already being made all around the plant to prepare for the model” ahead of its planned launch in 2021.
While it will be Dingolfing’s first all-electric vehicle, BMW says that “electrified vehicle (PHEV) production more than doubled year-on-year to around 9% of the overall plant production.”
As we reported in our closer look at BMW’s 5th gen electric powertrain technology, the German automaker is planning new electric powertrain components that can fit into their new vehicle platforms to enable the production of gas-powered, plug-in hybrid, and all-electric vehicles all on the same production line.
The company believes that this approach will give them more flexibility to respond to the demand for electric vehicles.
Last year, BMW admitted that Tesla Model 3 is putting pressure on the market when it comes to demand for EVs.
Earlier this week, a large BMW dealer in the US said that the automaker needs to do more to combat Tesla as they see Model 3 affecting their sales.
Ahead of the launch of the iNEXT concept, BMW has presented the vehicle as a competitor to the Model 3.