Swindon & Wiltshire Business News

Happy birthday BMW Mini - Swindon celebrates 20 years of production

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The Mini brand and BMW Group’s UK manufacturing plants in Swindon and Oxford are celebrating twenty successful years of Mini production.

In early 2001, production began for Mini body parts in Swindon and on April 26 that same year, the first new Mini rolled off the line in Oxford.

Over the past two decades, Mini has built over five million cars in the UK. Plant Oxford currently builds the Mini three-door hatch, Mini five-door hatch, Mini Clubman, and the Mini Electric, all on the same production line.

BMW Group chairman Oliver Zipse, who was in charge of manufacturing at Mini Plant Oxford from 2007-2008, said: “Congratulations to everyone at Mini Plants Oxford and Swindon for reaching such a great manufacturing milestone.

"I still have very fond memories of my time at Oxford. It was a real pleasure to work at the home and heart of the Mini brand with such engaging and passionate people, nearly one quarter of whom have dedicated these 20-years or more to building our cars.”

MINI Plants Oxford and Swindon employ over 4,500 highly-skilled employees, including 130 apprentices, who all keep production moving to build 1,000 Minis a day - one every 67 seconds.

Peter Weber, managing director of Plants Oxford and Swindon (2019 – present) said: “I am extremely proud of our teams at Oxford and Swindon and the incredible job they do. Their continued commitment and passion over the past 20 years has helped to strengthen Mini's reputation around the world."

Plants Oxford and Swindon have been at the heart of their communities for a very long time – 108 and 65 years respectively. In recent years, Plant Oxford has become a must-see tourist destination with 26,000 Mini fans enjoying the award-winning Plant Tours.

With the Mini Electric going into production in 2020, Plant Oxford is already electrified and in the early 2030s, Mini will be the first BMW Group brand to go fully electric.

The plants in Oxford and Swindon have played a pivotal role in making Mini production more sustainable over the past 20 years and are vital to the BMW Group’s strategy to further reduce emissions, says the manufacturer.