Following the first announcement, MINI marked the 100th year of car making at the Oxford Plant in a ceremony attended by BMW’s top brass. Even Prime Minister David Cameron acknowledged this milestone and congratulated MINI on its achievements. This plant heralds Britain’s come back as a major automotive maker.
A century ago when William Morris built its first ‘Bullnose’ Morris Oxford at this plant, the United Kingdom was beginning to become the largest car maker in the world. Then as you know things went downhill in the 80s and 90s, but now all main British brands – MINI, Rolls-Royce, Bentley, Jaguar, Land Rover, MG – are back on their feet, albeit under foreign ownership.
The Oxford plant has a magnificent history. Over the past 100 years 11.65 million cars were produced here, bearing 13 different British brands and one Japanese. Almost 500,000 people have worked at the plant in the past 100 years and in the early 1960s numbers peaked at 28,000. Today, Plant Oxford employs 3,700 associates who manufacture up to 900 MINIs every day.
Congratulating the plant on its historic milestone, Prime Minister David Cameron said: “The Government is working closely with the automotive industry so that it continues to compete and thrive in the global race and the success of MINI around the world stands as a fine example of British manufacturing at its best. The substantial contribution which the Oxford plant has made to the local area and the British economy over the last 100 years is something we should be proud of.”