BMW Manufacturing will shut down production at Plant Spartanburg on April 3.
The company said in an announcement late today that it would stop producing X models for at least 16 days, with plans to resume April 19. Volvo Car Corp. in Ridgeville will halt production at its S.C. plant on Thursday. Both shutdowns are in response to the new coronavirus pandemic.
“The health and protection of our associates is our top priority,” today’s written announcement from BMW said. “At the same time, the dynamic development of the corona pandemic is having a major impact on the global demand for cars. BMW Manufacturing is taking a flexible approach and adjusting our production volumes accordingly.”
A spokesman for BMW USA, which is based in New Jersey, said Thursday the plan then was to keep making cars as usual, but officials in Munich made it clear they were ready to cooperate with local, national and international government recommendations.
“Decisions on whether to close specific plants and when are made individually, and dependent primarily on the regional operating environment,” Phil DiIanni, corporate communications manager for BMW North America, said in an email Thursday. “In the case of Plant Spartanburg, we continue to monitor the situation daily and are in close alignment with both state and local government officials.”
About 11,000 people work at the Greer plant, which in 2019 celebrated its 25th year in production.
In Munich on Wednesday, through its online newsroom, BMW officials said the company will work to keep business going while supporting international and local efforts to curtail the pandemic.
Oliver Zipse, chairman of the BMW AG board of management, said, “Solidarity and responsible action are called for. In our society it is the duty of the strong to protect the weak. The BMW Group therefore fully supports the measures aimed at containing the spread of coronavirus.”