Mini hits the 1.5 million mark
* 1.5 million 'new' Minis built * Built at Oxford since 2001 * New models planned...
BMW has made its 1.5 millionth Mini at its Oxfordshire plant.
A Chilli red Mini Clubman rolled off the production line today in front of Business Minister Ian Lucas and BMW Group board member Ian Robertson.
Mr Robertson said: 'This is a great day for the plant and a wonderful milestone to reach in the 50th year of Mini.'
'This is a tough time for the car industry and no business is immune from its challenges, but Mini is an extremely resilient brand with huge customer appeal and we have seen a strengthening order bank in recent months. We will launch a number of new models in the coming years and we are optimistic for the future.'
BMW Group says it has invested more than 380 million at Oxford and a further 100 million at its subsidiary factories at Hams Hall and Swindon. It employs more than 7000 people in the UK.
In total, 5.3 million original Minis were built between 1959 and 2000, so production of the latest model has pushed the overall number to 6.8 million cars.
An even more economical diesel version of the latest Mini goes on sale in September; a production version of the Crossover concept car is expected to be launched within the next two years and trials of the all-electric Mini E are already under way.