South Carolina motor vehicle industry

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March 25, 2015

Original equipment producers


BMW – Greer plant opened in 1994, and employs 8,000 people producing the X3, X4, X5, and X6 sport utility vehicles (SUVs). Workers produce about 1,200 vehicles daily, and the plant has produced more than 2.9 million cars and SUVs since opening.

Freightliner – Gaffney plant opened in 1995. Employees produce custom chassis for motor homes, buses, and walk-in delivery vans; hybrid electric motor home chassis; and hydraulic hybrid walk-in van chassis.

Daimler – Ladson plant opened in 2007, making Sprinter commercial vans. The plant’s capacity is 32,000 units annually, for the U.S. and Canada. Sprinters had been imported from Germany and later assembled at Freightliner in Gaffney.

Honda – Timmonsville plant opened in 1998 for production of all-terrain vehicles (ATVs). In 2005, Honda consolidated its North American ATV production in South Carolina. The plant employs 600.

Proterra – Greenville plant opened in 2010 making electric municipal buses.

Force Protection Inc. – Opened in 1997 in Ladson, employees make ballistic- and blast-protected vehicles used to support armed forces. Products include the Cougar, Buffalo, and Cheetah. The company also is the developer and manufacturer of Force Armor, a bolt-on armor package for a variety of vehicles.

Streit USA Armoring LLC – A designer and manufacturer of armored sport utility vehicles for commercial and civilian use, located in North Charleston. Their ballistic- and blast-resistant vehicles fully resemble the street versions of the originals.