BMW so far plans SUV building business as usual at its Spartanburg plant, 200 miles inland in South Carolina

BMW so far plans SUV building business as usual at its Spartanburg plant, 200 miles inland in South Carolina

BMW is continuing to build cars at its US SUV assembly plant in the state of Southern Carolina as towns and cities nearer the coast are all but abandoned as Hurricane Florence approaches, expected to make landfall early on Friday (14 September).

The New York Times said the plant, in the South Carolina hills, 200 miles from the coast, is continuing to produce SUVS.

A company spokesman told the paper that, while the plant may encounter storm winds and rain, the hurricane's impact should be muted so far inland.

BMW has nonetheless diverted rail cars full of finished vehicles to secure holding areas until the storm passes.

Further south, officials at the port in Savannah, Georgia, one of several through which BMW exports its US made models, said they were relieved by the latest projections for the storm as it had looked earlier this week to be in Florence's path, just as east coast ports gear up for the coming Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year retail season.

Robert Morris, a spokesman for the Georgia Ports Authority, told the NYT: "It looks like we're just in for a rain event with some strong winds. Right now it's business as usual."

Car dealers are also taking precautions, the New York Times reported. Hendrick Automotive Group, which owns dozens of dealerships in the southeast, closed its outlets in Charleston as well as in Jacksonville and Wilmington, North Carolina. It planned to close several others in NC last night.

Auto market intelligence
from just-auto

• Auto component fitment forecasts
• OEM & tier 1 profiles & factory finder
• Analysis of 30+ auto technologies & more