BMW in final stages of decision on potential new factory

BEIJING, April 20 Sun Apr 20, 2014 2:25am EDT

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BEIJING, April 20 (Reuters) - Germany's BMW is getting closer to deciding whether it will build a new factory, its board member Ian Robertson said on Sunday, as the luxury carmaker expands capacity to meet demand in key markets.

"We are in the final stages of deciding where the plant will be," Robertson told reporters at the Auto China show in Beijing on Sunday.

Robertson said several locations were under consideration, though he declined to elaborate.

"We see niches in the 3 Series segment, with the GT and the 4 Series Grand Coupe. These products are really important today," he said, when asked which products might potentially require more capacity.

Earlier this year, BMW said it planned to expand capacity at its plant in Spartanburg in the United States to boost production levels of its sports utility vehicles.

Ramping up production capacity at Spartanburg to 450,000 cars by 2016 will make it BMW's largest factory, the company said.

Robertson said he was confident the Munich-based carmaker would be able to achieve its target of selling a record 2 million cars or more this year.

"Overall we are seeing a global picture which has growth in it," he said. (Reporting by Edward Taylor in BEIJING; Editing by Lee Chyen Yee)

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