Coronavirus lands at BMW, automaker quarantines 150 employees

A BMW employee in Germany tested positive for COVID-19 and did not travel abroad.

Sean Szymkowski
It all started with Gran Turismo. From those early PlayStation days, Sean was drawn to anything with four wheels. Prior to joining the Roadshow team, he was a freelance contributor for Motor Authority, The Car Connection and Green Car Reports. As for what's in the garage, Sean owns a 2016 Chevrolet SS, and yes, it has Holden badges.
Sean Szymkowski
2 min read
2020 BMW X6 M
Enlarge Image
2020 BMW X6 M

The employee is reportedly doing well.

Uwe Fischer/BMW

The coronavirus has, so far, defined 2020. The novel virus that first emerged in China has spread to numerous countries around the world, and it continues to impact global business, including automakers.

Although Germany has already reported cases of the coronavirus, it's specifically landed at BMW . The automaker has placed 150 employees under at-home quarantine after an employee tested positive for the virus, Automotive News Europe reported Monday.

The unnamed employee, who did not travel abroad, works in the company's research and development center and may have come in contact with the employees who have been quarantined. BMW confirmed the situation with Roadshow and said operations will continue as normal after the area cleaning and disinfecting the area. Most importantly, the employee is doing well, the automaker said in a statement.

Across Germany, 157 cases of the coronavirus have been confirmed, but there have been no related deaths.

So far, automakers haven't come forward to underscore any major stresses on supply chains. A social media post last month by a United Auto Workers local reportedly warned of parts shortages at General Motors here in the US; GM refuted the claim and said production is unaffected as of last month.

In China, the epicenter of the outbreak, auto sales have come to a screeching halt as the state government quarantines entire cities to slow the virus' spread. Elsewhere in the auto industry, the coronavirus caused the cancellation of the 2020 Geneva Motor Show, which was set to kick off on March 3.

Originally published March 2.
Update, March 3: Adds confirmation of situation from BMW.

Watch this: 2019 BMW 330i joins Roadshow's long-term test fleet

2020 BMW X5 M Competition is the best kind of excess

See all photos