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“A good look at German excellence in progress”
Review of BMW Zentrum

BMW Zentrum
Ranked #3 of 39 things to do in Spartanburg
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 20, 2012

i have been to the Volvo plant in Sweden and have seen the exteriors of the BMW plants in Germany; but this sprawling manufacturing plant in the USA was the first tour where I have seen BMW vehicles assembled up close and personal. Everything about the assembly of these fine vehicles bespeaks quality and precision. Car assembly plants do not vary that much in the process used to build a car, whether in Malmo, Sweden; Munich or the USA. The care taken to make certain that each vehicle is the best it can be coming off the line is impressive. That's why BMW charges what it does, and why they can stand behind their products' quality. It was encouraging to hear that they have two shifts operating every week. South Carolina was lucky to get this plant at this location. Of course, BMW was looking for a place where labor costs would be low and their plant would be welcomed. They certainly got what they wanted.

Thank MonaOrangeCountyCA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 18, 2012

Wow. Wow. Wow. That about sums it up. This is a most impressive tour of an amazing facility. This is no "behind the glass wall" type of factory tour- you are RIGHT there, walking right next to all of the assembly processes- sparks flying, forklifts flying by, parts such as gear shift knobs and airbags close enough to touch.... The robotics in this plant are beyond belief. Like being in a Spielberg movie, except that it is 100% real. The robots are a little scary- they seem alive! It is just crazy to watch a huge BMW engine/transmission rolling down an assembly line and become "married" to the car body. And then, to see them hand place the airbags, dash board, seats, etc.... It is quite a process. It is so finely tuned, vendors are fined thousands of dollars per MINUTE for parts delivered late, as it has the ability to shut down the entire line. At the end of the assembly line, you get to see a vehicle be started and driven for the first time. Our tour guide told us that one lady was so amazed, she cried! Really, I am not much of a car nut or into robotics, but this plant tour earned an A+ in my book. How exciting to watch these great driving machines be produced right here in the good ole USA!

1  Thank bloomcrew
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 12, 2012

While so much of the rest of the US is suffering from the poor economy, with jobs transitioned from technology and manufacturing to softer service work or jobs gone off shore entirely, this BMW plant is humming! It's well worth the time to tour the place and to see what American workers can do. Thanks, BMW, for having invested in South Carolina, where there are fewer unions and hassles to contend with than in so many of the rust belt states. Anyway, the tour is very impressive. First you get to pass through a nice little museum with lots of old and new cars, all BMWs of course, and lots of motorcycles. Sorry, no Harleys. Then, in a group of a dozen or so people, you form up with a very knowledgeable and articulate guide, put on your goggles and headset, and go straight into the plant to see the building and birth of an X3, X5 or X6. Lots of robots, lots of sparks, lots of incredible manufacturing control system synchronization. Quite remarkable; magic to those who haven't been in the industry. You get to see the entire car evolve, from building the under body out of dozens of small parts all the way to seeing a car started for the first time. Make a reservation the next time you're in the area. It is well worth the effort and will make you further appreciate the quality of a BMW and the capabilities of an American work force.

Thank AlPhD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 28, 2012

If you appreciate old cars and motorcycles, as well as new ones, you will really enjoy the variety on display. Inspired me to buy my Z3.

Thank Pam D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 28, 2012

Calgary, AB ambassadors visited the Friendship Force of Lake Hartwell club April 23-30, 2012. A tour of BMW was part of the planned activities on 4/25. All who took the tour rated it very highly, visited the gift shop and viewed the film. Karen at the tour desk was most gracious. An excellent experience.

Jeanne Howe, Exchange Director

Thank Venita H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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