Mercedes & BMW Merge Select Vehicle Processing for the US

BMW and Mercedes have been trying to find ways to pool resources and save money for the last several years. From sharing engines to sharing the MINI platform, several options have been discussed and ultimately decided against. However this week the two are announcing that they will be cooperating not in engineering or production of delivery processing. The Automotive News is reporting that the two (including of course MINI) will be cooperating in vehicle processing in Mercedes Baltimore processing plant. Here’s an excerpt:

Jim O’Donnell, president of BMW of North America, told Automotive News today the deal will save BMW time and money. He anticipates about 50,000 cars destined for the central region, which includes Chicago, will be prepared by Mercedes-Benz. He would not disclose financial details.

Currently, BMW vehicles come in through Charleston and are shipped to BMW’s factory in South Carolina for pre-delivery work. But because of the expansion of BMW’s factory in Spartanburg, S.C., “the plant is no longer appropriate once the new X3 (crossover) starts to be built” next year, O’Donnell said.

According to the report BMW suggested the plan when searching for an outside contractor to take over processing. Both companies are very open to further joint ventures including using a common shipping company for US deliveries.

+ BMW, Mercedes to cooperate on U.S. vehicle preparation / Autonews