Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Mini Supply Chain Problems at Mini

If you haven't heard automaker Mini, owned by BMW, has developed a larger, four-door version of its popular Mini Cooper called the Mini Countryman.

Being an avid fan of Mini and the previous owner of one of the first Mini Coopers in New York I went to my local dealership in Switzerland and purchased one a few months ago.  Why? Uh, I needed the four wheel drive in snowy Switzerland?  Do you believe me? My fiance didn't either.  I just love the design and the drive.  Plus the iPhone to dashboard connection is amazing.  I can even Tweet as I drive -- don't worry I will pull over.

Everything has been on schedule, until last night. After dropping off some paperwork I discovered that the supplier of the rims for the Mini Countryman seems to be having challenges keeping up with demand.  So here is what I saw when I went to look at my new car last night.  What irks me is that in this day and age how does a automotive supplier not have better forecasting tools?  I mean new cars pop up every year.  They must have the data to track buying trends with current economics.  I just don't get it.  This should be easy.

I am told they should arrive on Saturday, but I am hearing that not everyone is so lucky.  Another interesting supply chain point about the Mini Countryman is that it is being made in Styria, Austria, land of delicious pumpkin seed oil -- trust me it is delicious.  Anyway, word is that the Austrians at supplier Magna Steyr can make them faster than the Germans and the Brits, who make the Cooper.


Gil Buckman said...

for some reason I think it's cool that you can even see it, even if its not complete! or is that too much of a tease ;)
I was in Hollywood yesterday and what did I see but a Mini Countryman driving down the road with a old mini perched on top! whoa baby!!
i hope you get your new complete car soon. Me I will wait until I have more dollars in the bank and think maybe I will purchase in the spring!

Christopher Sciacca said...

Hi Gil, thanks for your comments. Yes, I have it now and it is really a great car. Photos are here: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=320387&id=743868473&l=c946a0d36a

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