At the start of this week, BMW Group Plant Dingolfing began series production of the new BMW 8 Series Coupé, the sportscar that will launch the BMW model offensive in the luxury segment. An amount in the low three-digit-million-euro range has been invested in the site in Lower Bavaria in preparation for the new model series. A large number of digital innovations have also been integrated into the production process, including self-driving transport systems and smart devices.
Dr. Andreas Wendt, head of BMW Group Plant Dingolfing said, "As the plant that builds the BMW 7 Series sedans, BMW Group Plant Dingolfing has outstanding expertise in producing vehicles for the luxury segment. We are optimally prepared for production of the new BMW 8 Series Coupé. I am sure our customers around the world will love this luxury sportscar.
Stefan Schmid, chairman of the Works Council at the Dingolfing location claimed, "I am proud that we will be producing the new BMW 8 Series Coupé at BMW Group Plant Dingolfing. It will consolidate our position as a center of competence for the luxury class and secure our site’s future."
Smart material mix and flexible production structures
Intelligent lightweight construction, with a clever mix of materials, including steel, plastic, aluminum and carbon fiber, is used in the body of the new sportscar. In addition to the supporting structures at the front and rear of the vehicle, other components, such as the roof, doors, bonnet and the front firewall of the all-new BMW 8 Series Coupé, are made of aluminum.
For the first time in a series-production BMW model, the roof is available in carbon-fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) – which is also manufactured at the Dingolfing location in an innovative wet-pressing process.
Thanks to the BMW production system’s high level of flexibility, it was largely possible to integrate the new BMW 8 Series Coupé into existing production structures. The luxury sportscar, which will roll off the assembly line alongside BMW 5 Series and 7 Series models, relies on tried and tested manufacturing processes.
Innovations in the production process
In parallel with ramp-up of the new BMW 8 Series Coupé, digitalization of logistics and production processes in Dingolfing continues apace. For example, in door assembly, parts are delivered to the line by autonomous tugger trains; on the finish line, collaborative robots measure gaps and misalignments.
BMW Group Plant Dingolfing increasingly makes use of wearables. These mobile computer technologies worn on the body support staff with their tasks. In addition to the ProGlove smart glove scanner, a so-called "exotics alarm", for example, will use the vibrating alarm of a smartwatch to alert staff when a car with non-standard equipment options is coming up and requires special attention.
Virtual reality glasses have also been used for the first time in training assembly staff: Specific assembly processes for the new BMW 8 Series Coupé were videoed and viewed by employees through VR glasses. This enabled them to familiarize themselves with the new model and the correct fitment process before production ramped up.
Two engine variants available from launch
Two engine choices will be available when the new BMW 8 Series Coupé goes on sale in November 2018. The V8 engine in the BMW M850i xDrive Coupé (combined fuel consumption: 10.5 – 10.0 l/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 240 – 228 g/km) delivers impressive power: The latest generation of the 4.4-litre eight-cylinder engine has been completely redeveloped to deliver a performance topping out at 530 hp and a torque of 750 Nm.