Magna may lose BMW's Mini car contract for Austria

FRANKFURT Mon Oct 1, 2012 2:14pm EDT

FRANKFURT Oct 1 (Reuters) - Canadian automotive group Magna International may lose the contract with BMW to build the next generation of Mini cars at its Austrian plant as BMW looks to concentrate Mini production in two locations.

Graz-based contract car manufacturing subsidiary Magna Steyr currently makes the Mini Countryman sports utility vehicle (SUV) and later this year will also begin producing the Paceman, a sportier coupe version of the SUV, the seventh derivative of the Mini.

"We let Magna Steyr produce the Countryman and the Paceman, (...) but in the mid-term we are looking at concentrating Mini production in two locations, namely Oxford and NedCar (in Born)," a spokesman for BMW said on Monday.

He added that the Dutch plant in Born would offer improved logistics versus Graz, since it was closer to the supplier base that is largely situated in the UK.

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