MINI and BMW’s Leipzig Plant are continuing their electrification journey with the introduction of the all-electric MINI Countryman, just four months after the launch of the combustion-engine version. For MINI this is a huge moment in its transition to eventually becoming an all electric brand. For the Leipzig Plant it marks another milestone in the transition to electric mobility, following the phase-out of the BMW i3.

The MINI Countryman Electric represents a significant step in MINI’s electrification strategy, offering two fully electric variants, the Countryman E and the Countryman SE. Plant Leipzig has undergone continuous upgrades since 2018 to enable higher production volumes thanks to BMW’s €1.6 billion investment. The main driver behind the volume increase is the MINI Countryman, with output set to rise to nearly 500 units per day by 2024.

Producing four different cars on a single line requires a lot of planning. Flexible assembly structures are key to this, allowing seamless integration of the MINI Countryman Electric into the already complex production process. The plant now handles all stages of high-voltage battery production, contributing to the BMW Group’s transformation towards e-mobility. Resource-saving painting processes, including overspray-free painting, further emphasize Leipzig’s commitment to sustainability.

With the production launch of the MINI Countryman Electric, all three stages of the Gen 5 high-voltage battery production process are now represented at BMW Group Plant Leipzig: cell coating, module production and battery assembly. Operations in all three are currently ramping up, with five cell-coating, three module-production and two high-voltage battery-production lines now in place.

“We are in the middle of the transformation to e-mobility. Starting this year, Plant Leipzig will carry out every stage of our in-house high-voltage battery production process. It’s our next great step forwards.”

Markus Fallböhmer, Head of Battery Production at the BMW Group

Plant Leipzig’s e-component production capacity has been increasing since 2021. It will now manufacture not just the high-voltage batteries for the MINI Countryman Electric but also e-components for the BMW iX1, BMW iX2, BMW i4, BMW i5 and BMW iX made at other sites. The e-component production unit at Leipzig currently employs some 1,000 people.

The facility’s long-term vision includes decarbonizing production by replacing fossil fuels with green hydrogen. Plans for a regional hydrogen grid are underway, positioning Plant Leipzig as a pioneer in sustainable automotive production.

The MINI Countryman E and SE will arrive in the UK and EU later this month. The North American market will exclusively get the SE beginning with July production. That should reach dealers by early September.