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      11-29-2007, 10:23 AM   #1
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Bmw Manufacturing Co. To Be Featured On National Geographic Channel

** This video is a must-see for BMW Z4 Owners **
You can watch this on TV on Thursday, Nov. 29, at 9 p.m. ET. or you can watch a good amount of it online at the following link ==> http://www.bmwusfactory.com/media_ce...6&strYear=2007


BMW MANUFACTURING CO. TO BE FEATURED ON NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CHANNEL'S "ULTIMATE FACTORIES"

BMW Manufacturing Co. will be the subject of the National Geographic Channel's "Ultimate Factories" television show Thursday, Nov. 29, at 9 p.m. ET.
The hour-long program will focus on the building of the famous Z4 Roadster and is a one-of-a-kind, behind-the-scenes tour of the high-tech manufacturing plants that create this world class automobile. The National Geographic Channel team spent a week in Germany, filming at the factory in the Bavarian heartland of Landshut, where the automotive industry's lightest six-cylinder crankcase is made, at the Munich factory that assembles 1,200 engines a day, and seven days at BMW Manufacturing in Upstate South Carolina where every BMW Z4 is built.

The program also highlights BMW's environmental innovation by being the world's first automotive factory to recycle landfill methane gas from rotting trash to power its plant. Methane gas routed from the nearby Palmetto Landfill provides BMW Manufacturing Co. with 63 percent of all its power, reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the upstate of South Carolina by 60,000 tons per year - the equivalent of 4,300 cars driving around the equator every year.

The U.S. plant has 4,500 associates - and almost 500 robots - that produce 600 vehicles a day. From the Body Shop to the Paint Shop and then Assembly, in just under 40 hours a sleek, customized and luxurious BMW Z4 Roadster, replete with the unique double kidney grill and famous white-and-blue roundel logo, is made. Tune in and see how it's done.

BMW Manufacturing Co., a subsidiary of the BMW Group based in Munich, Germany, is the exclusive manufacturer of the Z4 and M Roadster, Z4 and M Coupe in addition to the X5 Sports Activity Vehicle. Its website address is www.bmwusfactory.com. In addition to the South Carolina manufacturing facility, BMW's North American subsidiaries include sales, marketing and financial services operations in the United States, Canada and throughout Latin America, and a design firm in California.
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      11-29-2007, 11:12 AM   #2
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sweet; thanks for the heads up.

they showed the Ferrari factory on that show before... wow. the most amazing place I've ever seen.
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      11-29-2007, 11:13 AM   #3
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imma watch it...thanks for info
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      11-29-2007, 01:08 PM   #4
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Thanks for the 411.....now this is the positive aspect to being a member of this forum (as opposed to the is it ok for teenagers to drive BMWs *lol*). I'll probably watch at 9 pm (it's on again at midnight)...
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      11-29-2007, 01:39 PM   #5
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      11-29-2007, 04:43 PM   #6
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ITS IN HIGH DEF YEAH BABY! DVR TIME, they got the ferrari one right on before it
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      11-29-2007, 05:01 PM   #7
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great! I hope its different then all the stuff on the 3-4 hour long BMW Ultimate Driving Pleasure DVD that they've sent out in recent times to current BMW owners.
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      11-29-2007, 05:02 PM   #8
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Also hope its different then The Birth of a Sports Car: The BMW 6 series
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      11-29-2007, 05:07 PM   #9
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its on at 6:00 PM here on west coast, just a heads up
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      11-29-2007, 07:06 PM   #10
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MarkE90M3 - Thanks for the heads up!
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      11-29-2007, 07:07 PM   #11
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anybody can record that show and send

a link on youtube (?) or by CD. I am in canada and cannot catch that channel...
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      11-29-2007, 07:24 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John 070 View Post
Thanks for the 411.....now this is the positive aspect to being a member of this forum (as opposed to the is it ok for teenagers to drive BMWs *lol*). I'll probably watch at 9 pm (it's on again at midnight)...
I couldn't agree more.
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      11-29-2007, 09:39 PM   #13
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very interesting..good to know how my car is made
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      11-29-2007, 09:52 PM   #14
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If you missed it, it will air again tonight at midnight ET
and Dec. 1 at 1PM.
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      11-29-2007, 10:05 PM   #15
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i just saw half of it now. really cool show. i learned a lot. i was gonna post about it but there's already this thread. lol.

following episodes are showing Z06 and Ferrari factory.

they're doing a re-run after the ferrari episode.
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      11-29-2007, 10:22 PM   #16
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Just saw it. I learned a lot like the other guy just said. It's amazing how ergonomically designed the factory was.

Did anyone notice a few things that seemed kinda weird, or is it just me. They used M Coupes, not a Z4 3.0si in the track footage, and then they used the pre-facelift Z4's that had the amber in the headlight for the assembly footage. Not to mention the X5s there were pre-facelift in the assembly, whereas when they mentioned "this is the same plant as where the X5s are built", they use a post-facelift X5.

I think I'm just nitpicking, but nonetheless I loved it.

I was starting to watch Chevy build a Z06, and started laughing when the workers were talking to each other "what level do I need to set the weld to"...*welds piece of chassis*..."Oh, good, at least I didn't mess up the chassis". lol at the Vette's production workers. At least it's a cool car haha.
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      11-29-2007, 10:28 PM   #17
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ooo interesting!
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      11-30-2007, 01:33 AM   #18
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A couple of other random facts from the show (I've only seen the last half so far - I happened upon it while channel surfing):

(skip this post now if you prefer to see these on the show first)









They run the plain bodies through what look like car wash rollers to remove dust before painting, except the rollers are made from ostrich feathers.

They use electrostatically-charged paint/primer to make it stick on the grounded body and to minimize waste. The painting process increases the body weight by 20 pounds.

When the body hits the paint booth, a nearby contractor (Lear) is signaled to build the seats for this car (Just In Time manufacturing). This is 14 hours before assembly. At six hours before assembly, Lear is signaled to deliver the seats to the BMW factory. They're trucked over from Lear five miles away.

They use a hovercraft lift to hold and carry the exhaust system as it is installed in the overhead chassis. The hovering allows the unit to be repositioned easily and to slide along the floor with the chassis as it moves down the assembly line.

They heat the wiring harnesses to make them more flexible for installation on the assembly line.

The BMW guy said that for years they had been telling people that the roundel represented a propeller from BMW's heritage of building aircraft motors, but they've since determined that it's simply the colors of the Bavarian flag, as shown in the flag's blue/white checker pattern (hey, he said it, not me...).
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      11-30-2007, 02:08 AM   #19
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just finished the marathon ferrari, bmw, and z06. the bmw was a very good watch but the z06 gave me a new perspective on the car. all the components in the car and rediseigned features and that racey fuel pump thing is pretty cool and for the price with a mod its pretty much game.

whats the largest size the z06 can go on the rear tires? i have seen a gt2 with 295 rears before. aren't vipers in the 3xx range?
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      11-30-2007, 09:53 AM   #20
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Is it just me or did anyone else think, that they use too much "bang technology" at the BMW factory? (Using thier hands to bang stuff into place and make it work)
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      11-30-2007, 11:39 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bimmer Loyalist View Post
Did anyone notice a few things that seemed kinda weird, or is it just me. They used M Coupes, not a Z4 3.0si in the track footage, and then they used the pre-facelift Z4's that had the amber in the headlight for the assembly footage. Not to mention the X5s there were pre-facelift in the assembly, whereas when they mentioned "this is the same plant as where the X5s are built", they use a post-facelift X5.

I think I'm just nitpicking, but nonetheless I loved it.
I haven't watched it yet (coworker burned a dvd of it; so I'll watch all three tonight). But I just popped it in here at work, and when they're installing the steering wheel, you can see it's a M roadster. They must have filmed multiple cars at different stages of assembly and just compiled the video.
To most people, a 2003 2.5i Z4 coupe looks the same as a 2006 M roadster.
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      11-30-2007, 01:24 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveInNC View Post
The BMW guy said that for years they had been telling people that the roundel represented a propeller from BMW's heritage of building aircraft motors, but they've since determined that it's simply the colors of the Bavarian flag, as shown in the flag's blue/white checker pattern (hey, he said it, not me...).
I believe this is part of chopping up an interview and not getting the whole truth.

The actual shape did come from the airplane propeller rotating. The misconception is that the colors in the logo came from the blue sky behind the propeller spinning (this is were the Bavarian flag actually comes into play).

The attached picture is supposedly were the shape of the was derived. At least this is the picture and information that BMW sent us and used to train all the dealer personnel that went through the BMW University.

BTW... They did mess up on the show. My interview was put on the cutting room floor but they put my name under the Production Manager at that plant during his interview (that is not me ). If you don't blink, you will see me walking the customer down the hall to show him his new Z4.

As some of you stated, it was very informative. I have worked at the BMW Performance Center for almost 8 years. I was able to see and learn more information from that show than all my actual tours of the factory.
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