BMW Werk München - Monteur fixiert Reifen an rotem BMW i4

Industry focus

Automotive and Mobility

Munich’s automotive and mobility companies are using diverse strategies to meet the challenges of a sector undergoing major transformation.

Major trends and new technologies

The automotive and mobility sector plays a major role in Munich’s economy and labor market. The major OEM companies BMW and MAN, but also Siemens Mobility, Sixt and FlixMobility, as well as the Munich Transport Corporation (MVG), and the “Traffic” department of the municipal utilities company Stadtwerke München, have their headquarters here and are important regional employers.

Munich’s automotive and mobility companies are using diverse strategies to meet the challenges of a sector undergoing major transformation. A recent study shows that 80 percent of Munich-based companies in the sector have already fundamentally shifted the focus of their expertise.*

The OEMs, in particular, are characterized by high levels of innovation in the technologies relevant to e-mobility, digitalization and connected mobility, automated driving and mobility services.

* Der Automotive- und Mobilitätssektor in München in der Transformation (2022)

BMW i4 in der Schwenkmontage aufgehängt

Pioneers in sustainable mobility

MVG-Bus, Radfahrerin und Fußgänger vor Google Kontor Haus, Erika-Mann-Straße, München

Many Munich companies in the railway, public transport, cycling, and mobility services sector boast impressive expertise in key innovative areas. They play a pioneering role and have a good opportunity to establish themselves as market or technology leaders. This can also result in significant job creation.

Cross-sector networks in the area of mobility play an ever more important role in innovation and economic growth. This creates a self-reinforcing effect, with increasing numbers of digital companies locating their mobility operations in Munich.

Key companies in Munich

Figures for the Munich Region

socially insured jobs in automotive sector


€42 billion

in turnover (automotive sector, 2020)

7 percent

of total German turnover

15.400 socially insured jobs

in railway, public transport, bike, mobility services

From components to mobility-related IT

There is a broad range of manufacturers in Munich and the surrounding region, from vehicle parts and components to mobility-specific IT services.

Alongside the major players BMW and MAN there are renowned suppliers and service providers such as Knorr-Bremse, Bertrandt, iwis Ketten, Webasto, Infineon, ESG, and internationally successful start-ups including LiDAR-manufacturer Blickfeld and the Intel subsidiary Mobileye

When it comes to IT, some of the world’s leading companies have strategically important bases in Munich where they work on tomorrow’s technologies, among them Microsoft, Intel, Alphabet (Google), Cisco, Apple, IBM, Fujitsu and Siemens.

This pool of first-class expertise from all areas of the mobility transition is a unique selling point for Munich as an economic region.

Key mobility players in Munich by innovation area. See: Der Automotive- und Mobilitätssektor in München in der Transformation (2022), CAM - Bratzel, Girardi, Tellermann 2022. p. 55

[graphic:] Digitalization     Electrification     Automated driving

Focus on R&D

Munich’s excellent position is partly thanks to the intensive research and development activities in the automotive and mobility sector.

Munich’s rich and diverse university and research landscape can draw on a huge range of supporting scientific expertise. Also, the Technical University of Munich (TUM), the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (LMU) and the University of Applied Sciences (HM) are particularly important when it comes to new, highly skilled employees. These universities also drive and contribute to the success of Munich’s start-up scene. Most notably, UnternehmerTUM (Center for Innovation and Business Creation at the TUM) pools various innovation-focused services and enables the creation and development of numerous successful start-ups in the region.

BMW Group research

As one of the world’s leading manufacturers, the BMW Group is among the trendsetters in R&D and invests huge amounts in shaping the mobility of the future. In Munich, in particular, BMW has been continuously expanding its R&D activities for years. The BMW Research and Innovation Center (FIZ) in Munich currently employs some 26,000 people, and the number is still rising.

BMW Forschung und Technik GmbH, with its focus on research and technology, and BMW Car IT are also in Munich.

The BMW Center of Excellence for Battery Cells, which is central to e-mobility, has also been based in Munich since 2019.

Picture: The FIZ Nord building, opened in 2020.