BMW Manufacturing Co. officially began production Friday of its second-generation BMW X6 at its Greer plant.
The first new BMW X6 is a Sophisto Gray xDrive 35i and features Cognac Black nappa leather interior, the company said.
That first BMW X6 will go to a BMW dealership in China. The new vehicle model will go on sale worldwide later this year, according to Steve Wilson, a BMW spokesman.
The X6, one of four vehicles built in BMW’s Greer plant, was the world’s first sports activity coupe, BMW has said.
Other models built exclusively at the Greer plant for the world are the BMW X3, X4 and the X5, Wilson said. About 70 percent of those models are exported through the Port of Charleston to 140 countries, he said.
In March, the company also announced that the all-new BMW X7 would be produced at the Greer plant.
Production of the first-generation X6 started in early 2008 at the plant, Wilson said. U.S. sales of the X6, between 2008 and 2014 (July), totaled more than 37,000 units.
Since 2008, about 265,000 X6s have been produced for global customers, the company said.
“It was a very, very popular vehicle. A lot of folks would get this because it had a unique look to it, a very aggressive look,” Wilson said. “The second generation sort of builds on that. The look is more aggressive.”
“As the world’s first sports activity coupe, the BMW X6 holds a special place in Spartanburg’s 20-year production history,” said Manfred Erlacher, president and CEO, BMW Manufacturing Co.
“The bold, new look of the second-generation X6 is a welcome addition to the plant’s X-model lineup.”
The new BMW X6 blends “the robustness and versatility of a BMW X model with the sporting elegance typical of the brand’s coupes,” the company said.
In March, BMW announced an additional $1 billion investment at its plant in Greer.
That will increase annual production capacity to 450,000 vehicles by the end of 2016 and make the Greer facility the largest plant in the BMW Group’s international production network.