Leadership Change at BMW’s South Carolina Plant.
Manfred Erlacher, who has been President and CEO of BMW Manufacturing in Spartanburg, SC, for three years, will assume new responsibilities as the Managing Director of BMW Plant Regensburg beginning February 1, 2017. Succeeding Erlacher will be Knudt Flor, currently responsible for BMW Group Corporate Quality. The handover takes place December 1, 2016.
Under Erlacher’s leadership, production at the Spartanburg plant has grown from nearly 300,000 units per year to over 400,000 units per year, making the factory the largest BMW plant in the world by volume. The plant has also achieved several quality awards including the J.D. Power Initial Quality Study (IQS) Bronze Award for North and South America (2014), J.D. Power IQS Silver Award for North and South America (2016), J.D. Power IQS Award for the BMW X5 (2016), and the J.D. Power APEAL Award for the BMW X6 (2016).
The South Carolina plant also launched several vehicles during Erlacher’s three years, including the all-new BMW X4, BMW X3 LCI, second-generation BMW X6, BMW X5 M and X6 M, and the BMW X5 xDrive40e, Spartanburg’s first plug-in hybrid vehicle.
The new president of BMW Manufacturing will be Knudt Flor, a 28-year veteran with the BMW Group. Flor has served in several roles in Quality Assurance and Quality Management within the company. From 1998 – 2000, he worked at the Spartanburg plant as Quality Assurance of Car Assembly and Purchased Parts. He has also been Vice President of Production at BMW Plant Munich, Director of BMW Plant Rosslyn in South Africa, and Senior Vice President of Technology at BMW Brilliance Automotive Joint Venture in Shenyang, China. Most recently, Flor served as Senior Vice President of Quality Management for the BMW Group.
BMW Plant Spartanburg is currently undergoing a $1 billion expansion that includes construction and tooling of a new 1.2 million square-foot body shop, a 200,000 square-foot expansion of X5/X6 Assembly, and a 100,000 square-foot addition to Logistics. At the end of 2016, production capacity will increase to 450,000 units per year and the plant will have 8,800 jobs on site.