mk40 5pts Regarding economic concerns, the exports from the plant is perhaps a way for BMW to trying to help lessen/address the neg. economic impact of their imports to the US. The asian automakers do that by building many of their bread & butter brand cars in the US w higher US content (as high as 70% on best selling models) but BMW doesn't have a lower brand...other than the small nitch brand mini, so they try to address it another way... that is by exports. If the export figure is as he says (as high as 71%) that would mean the models produced at the SC plant are trade deficit neutral. So it's just the other models such as the 7, 6, 5 series & M cars that have a neg impact on trade deficit. This put them on par w/ or perhaps a little ahead of Toyota & Nissan w their Lexus & Infiniti brand imports. But behind Honda who has started to design, develope & produce Acura models in the US. As for the nytimes article..perhaps that is part of Germany's formula back home for success... this kind of partnership.