BMW Set to Showcase New Models in the Mini Lineup
|   Thursday, April 04, 2013
BMW is all set to start production work on the new Mini 3. Training and basic learning programs and workshops were being held for the employees and the event has finally come to a close. The assembly line at Plant Oxford is in its initial stages and the Mini 3 – also known as the Kite Fliers – is finally set to be sent to mass production. However, the first batch of vehicles is not expected before end 2013.

BMW has finished working on the exterior body of the Mini 3, which is borrowed from the UKL1 platform from BMW.
The vehicle features front wheel drive system and the company is trying to sort out clashes regarding manufacturing both the R56 Series and Mini 3 at the same venue. Company sources reveal that both these vehicles are completely new and separate and that mixing them could mean a tricky job.

None of the parts are remotely similar and this will continue for the next two years, when the R56 Series is scheduled to be phased out. Plant Oxford will be manufacturing the Mini 2 and the Mini 3 models together till then. Production of the Mini 3 is also expected to start by the middle of 2014 at the Nedcar plant in the Netherlands, which is famous for manufacturing vehicles from MITSUBISHI in the past.

Some of the renowned models to be manufactured at this plant include the Smart ForFour and the Volvo V40. The company has made a straightforward leap into the next generation and the models from Mini are based on completely new technologies. However, the Paceman and Countryman models from Mini will be manufactured as usual at the Austrian plant in magna, Graz for the next two years, post which they will be sent out of production.

BMW is keen to start a new lineup of vehicles based on alternate fuel cell technology and this is scheduled to take shape within the next two years. The company is therefore planning to phase out current production models within the same time frame and introduce a completely new lineup of vehicles.

This could mean a major transition within the next few years. Total sales of Mini increased by 8 percent this year since 2011 and the total number of vehicles sold were 328,000. This is a record number of sales. At the current manufacturing capacity, the Oxford Plant is manufacturing 900 vehicles every 19.5 hours which equals to a car being manufactured every 68 seconds (approximately).

Mini plans on continuing with this progress and the new cars have the capability to project Mini to the top within the next fiscal year. The new facility needs some work and the new batch of employees was trained to handle the operations carefully. However, its impact on car sales is yet to be assumed and this could take some time to show results. However, the management is confident of increasing sales volume and the final outcome of all the trading policies should be evident by next year.
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