One hundred and twenty-five years ago, the first car factory opened in Eisenach, laying the foundation for the manufacturing industry in the city and surrounding area. It was taken over by car manufacturer BMW in 1928 and then nationalized. With the demise of communism and the reunification of Germany in the early 1990s, the factory was shut down, but carmaker Opel simultaneously set up shop in Eisenach and continues to do business there today.
The share of industrial workers in the Eisenach region exceeds the average for Germany. And the high density of skilled employees and craftspeople makes the area attractive to automotive manufacturers throughout Germany and the world. South African company Bell Equipment, for example, produces dump trucks as well as other industrial machinery and parts there. And one year ago, Opel began making hybrid cars at its Eisenach plant, underscoring the area’s future orientation.
Other Eisenach industries range from metal processing to watchmaking to aviation. For instance, Flight Design, a medium-sized German company and a major player in the global market for light aircraft, established a location there. Flight Design specializes in sustainable flight solutions and recently expanded its range to include an aircraft fully powered by electricity.