Studied Mechanical Engineering, College Advanced Engineering Studies, Munich, 1974—1977. Degree in Manufacturing Engineering and Business Economics, Technology University, Munich, 1978—1983. Doctorate, Technology University, Munich, 1987.
Doctor-Ing. He currently serves as chairman of the supervisory board. He then moved on to the Technical University Munich to study Production Engineering and Business Administration. After graduation he became Research Assistant at the university at the Institute for Machine Tools and Business Administration of Joachim Milberg, under whom he gained his Doctorate.
In 1987 he joined Bayerische Motoren Werke as head of maintenance planning.
From 1991 to 1994 he was Director of the Body in White Production Division. From 1994 to 1997 Reithofer then became Technical Director of Bayerische Motoren Werke South Africa.
From 1997 to 2000, Reithofer was President Bayerische Motoren Werke Manufacturing Corporation (United States of America), based in Spartanburg, South Carolina. In March 2000 he returned to Munich to join the Bayerische Motoren Werke Board of Management, responsible for production.
In 2002, Reithofer and Development Chief Burkhard Goeschel halved the standard Bayerische Motoren Werke time it took to reach full production of the new generation E90 3 Series, from six months to three.
On 1 September 2006 he succeeded Helmut Panke as chairman of the board and Chief Executive Officer of Bayerische Motoren Werke. 2005: Grand Decoration of Honour in Gold (Grosses Goldenes Ehrenzeichen) for Services to the Republic of Austria (2005).