Revived German marque will build factory in its ancestral hometown as it attempts a European expansion; its first model is due to be launched in 2018
26 October 2016

The revived German marque Borgward will build a factory in its historic hometown of Bremen, marking another step towards its return to production.

Work on the new facility is due to start in 2017, with plans to start vehicle production in 2018. The exact location of the factory has yet to be revealed – Borgward says it is in discussion with potential production partners, property owners and the State of Bremen.

Bogward hires ex-Mini design boss Anders Warming

Initially, between 50 and 100 jobs are to be created by the new facility. The first phase of development will create an assembly hall with a production capacity of 10,000 vehicles per year.

Borgward produced more than a million vehicles from the 1920s to the early 1960s, when it went bankrupt. But the name was revived last year by a consortium led by the grandson of the original company founder.

The new Borgward is backed by Foton, a subsidiary of the Beijing Automotive Industry Corporation (BAIC), and it has ambitious plans. Headquartered in Stuttgart and already active in China, the decision to build in Bremen is a mark of the company’s intention to expand into Europe, and cement its projected image as a German, rather than a Chinese company.

The first car to be produced in Bremen will be a fully electric version of the BX7, a seven-seat, luxury SUV, which is already built and sold as a plug-in hybrid in China, where it is positioned below Volkswagen’s Tiguan. Borgward has also shown prototypes of further SUVs, the BX5 and BX6, at the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year. Electric and plug-in versions of the BX5 are already planned for Bremen, and more will follow.

The company recently hired Mini’s former design chief, Anders Warming, who will head up Borgward’s design team from January.

Phill Tromans

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Comments
4

27 October 2016
Like the short term operation by MG in Longbridge, this will be an assembly operation of parts produced in China. Just like cars used to be 'made' in Malta and New Zealand.

27 October 2016
MG set up a very limited operation in the UK to try to con people into thinking MG was still somehow British. It didn't work. This looks like the same sort of trick. It won't work either, because people who remember Borgward cars will know that they were extremely interesting and unusual. The Isabella was a distinctive sports tourer, and the P100 a technological tour de force that was rather too far ahead of its time. The rubber-stamp SUV Borgward has shown the world so far is just a forgettable clone of every otherfar eastern SUV. Chinese companies must learn that original creativity is more important than stealing ideas and attempting to steal heritage. When that happens, we'll happily buy their products.

28 October 2016
tried to do the same thing. Holding on to the Saab legacy and badge, while the Chinese only kept a token presence in Trolhättan, Sweden. Setting up your own plant while there are still so many abandoned former car plants spread all over the EU - it does not make a lot of sense.

27 October 2016
and if they did they'd know this is in no sense a Borgward. They could build them in Shetland and it would be no less authentic.

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