BMW Group prepares production of the all-electric MINI Countryman.

Beginning in 2023, MINI will transition to a totally electric future, beginning with the production of the new MINI Countryman at the Leipzig factory of the BMW Group. For the first time, a MINI model will be totally made in Germany. The locally produced, zero-emission all-arounder is a perfect match for the BMW Group's Leipzig production facility, one of the most cutting-edge and environmentally friendly car plants in the world. As the company's pilot project for developing a "green plant," a long-term, sustainable strategy for energy generation and consumption comes into play here.

"We are delighted to be able to hand over the first MINI "Made in Germany" to our customers in a CO2-neutral manner thanks to the plant's sustainable energy supply. In this way, the new all-electric MINI Countryman demonstrates what the brand stands for: electrified go-kart feeling and a strong focus on a minimal environmental footprint," says Stefanie Wurst, Head of MINI.

Leipzig's transition toward increased electromobility and environmentally friendly manufacture of the E-components as well as the full vehicles is under the direction of Petra Peterhaensel, the plant director, and Sonja Hengstler, the project manager for the new MINI Countryman. An average of 1,000 vehicles are produced daily by a core staff of 5,600 workers. Together with the BMW 1 Series, BMW 2 Series Gran Coupé, and BMW 2 Series Active Tourer, the new MINI Countryman rolls off the assembly line in Leipzig. As a result, the facility becomes the first to produce cars under the BMW and MINI brands simultaneously, once again exhibiting maximum flexibility.

Electromobility as a driver.

The BMW Group's sustainability strategy is fundamentally based on the growth of electromobility. A tribute to the desire of MINI enthusiasts for locally emission-free driving enjoyment is the fact that one in five MINI cars are currently electrified. The manufacture of the new MINI Countryman, which will start rolling off the Leipzig assembly line at the end of this year, will serve as the plant's next significant turning point and economic stimulus. Next, the plant's own manufacturing facilities will supply the high-voltage batteries for the all-electric MINI Countryman.

To do this, the BMW Group will invest more than 800 million euros and add eight production lines to its Leipzig facility's capacity for producing e-components by 2024. The planned 150,000 square meters of production space for the production of E-components is a sustainable investment in the Leipzig plant's long-term viability. The expansion is linked to job growth and even job security. More than 1,000 workers will be employed in the production of E-components by 2024.

Long-term commitment to sustainability.

The Leipzig plant is genetically predisposed to sustainability. Four wind turbines that are 190 meters high can be built right on the Leipzig factory site to produce some of the electricity necessary for the production of automobiles. Wind energy produced 21.9 GWh of electricity in 2021. This is equivalent to the annual electricity usage of more than 5,000 families with three people. Starting 2017, up to 700 high-voltage batteries from BMW i3 cars can be used to temporarily store the generated electricity in the battery storage farm.

"Our Leipzig vision is the complete decarbonization of production by replacing fossil fuels with hydrogen. At the BMW Group plant in Leipzig, we are the first automotive plant in the world to use a newly developed burner technology in our paint shop that can use green hydrogen instead of natural gas. Hydrogen has already been used in plant logistics since 2013. Today, five hydrogen filling stations provide energy for over 130 fuel cell-powered industrial trucks, the largest fleet in Germany," emphasizes Plant Director Petra Peterhaensel.

The all-electric MINI Countryman, the brand's largest model, ushers the new MINI family into an era of locally emission-free electromobility. This model generation marks the beginning of the brand's transition to an all-electric one by 2030. The MINI Countryman will soon provide more room and even greater comfort because to space-saving components like the exceptionally flat high-voltage battery, which is also made at the BMW Group Plant Leipzig.