Luxury automaker BMW is considering manufacturing the electric version of its Mini compact car in Germany instead of Britain if London follows through with plans to exit the European single market, Handelsblatt has learned.
Sources at BMW said the Munich-based automaker may produce the electric Mini at its plants in Regensburg and Leipzig. BMW may also tap the Dutch automotive company Nedcar, which already produces two Mini models for the German automaker.
BMW declined to comment, but sources at the automaker said it no longer makes sense to invest in Mini’s main plant in Oxford if Britain moved forward with what has been termed a “hard Brexit,” a move that would mean leaving the single market for goods and services.
BMW plans to open discussions with the British government in the coming weeks. A decision about the project has to be made in the second half of the year. BMW plans to bring the electric Mini to market in 2019.
The automaker expects the Mini line will be fully electrified over the long term due to increasingly stringent emissions regulations.
Read the full report in Monday’s edition.