Bovines and BMWs

Go! Camp & Drive - - NEWS -

This year, BMW’s plant in Ross­lyn out­side Pre­to­ria added 300 new ro­botic labour­ers. These ro­bots are re­quired to as­sem­ble new BMW X3 mod­els for South Africa and Eu­rope. That’s right: The Ger­mans drive in BMWs man­u­fac­tured by us. This shouldn’t come as too much of a sur­prise con­sid­er­ing that this same plant won the JD Power sat­is­fac­tion award in 2002 for as­sem­bling the high­est qual­ity cars in the world.

For­tu­nately, these 300 new ro­bots didn’t steal hu­man jobs. To the con­trary: BMW’s en­gi­neer­ing academy trains 300 new ap­pren­tices per year and a to­tal of 2 000 skilled ar­ti­sans have al­ready grad­u­ated from the academy to the assem­bly line.

BMW’s prom­ise to be­come more en­vi­ron­men­tally re­spon­si­ble has been strength­ened by us­ing the ser­vices of the Bio2Watt bio­elec­tric­ity sta­tion out­side Bronkhorstpruit. Ev­ery year the Bio2Watt sta­tion con­verts 40 000 tons of ma­nure and 20 000 other or­ganic waste into flammable gas by means of a di­ges­tion process. The gas is then used to fuel gen­er­a­tors that push 4.2 gW of elec­tric­ity into Eskom’s power grid. And BMW gets credit for their con­tri­bu­tion to the na­tional power sup­ply. BMW South Africa hopes to be able to rely 100% on al­ter­na­tive and sus­tain­able sources of en­ergy by the end of 2018. This com­pares favourably to BMW Ger­many’s aim to reach the same goal by 2020.

Be­cause 30% of BMW’s sales are thanks to the X-mod­els, the BMW Water­val branch in Midrand opened a new “life­style park”.

From this month on­ward you can pay R2 750 for a pro­fes­sional 4x4 course on a 1,3 km long ob­sta­cle trail. The course was specif­i­cally de­signed to make BMW’s X-mod­els shine. go! Drive & Camp’s Cyril Klop­per drove the trail (still un­fin­ished at the time of his visit) and he con­firms that it should im­press BMW own­ers.

Other than the 4x4 trail there’s a zi­pline, ab­seil­ing, parkrun trails, and a BMW shop where you can buy BMW-branded cloth­ing and sip on ex­pen­sive im­ported cof­fee.

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