Nissan extended the shutdown of the company’s manufacturing complex in Smyrna, Tennessee, while General Motors, Ford and Stellantis also added time shutdowns at several assembly plants in North America.
A Nissan spokeswoman confirmed the two-week extension of the shutdown of the Symrna complex, just outside Nashville, due to the continued impact of the semiconductor shortage.
“Smyrna assembly plant will be down the weeks of Aug. 30 and Sept. 6. Please note, however, that Sept. 6 is a planned non-production day due to the Labor Day holiday. We continue to work closely with our supplier partners to understand supply constraints and mitigate impact to employees, dealers and customers,” said Ly Love-Carter, Nissan’s spokeswoman, in an email to TheDetroitBureau.com
Nissan extends shutdown in Tennessee
Production at the Smyrna complex, the center of Nissan production in North America, has been curtailed since Aug. 16 due to semiconductor shortages. The problem remains front and center as automakers prepare for the annual model changeover and the industry’s autumn production push.
Nissan blames the shortages on closure of semiconductor plants in Malaysia, where production has halted dure to the spread of COVID-19.
The sprawling Smyrna plant, which is about 30 miles east of Nashville in central Tennessee, is the Japanese automaker’s largest production center in North America. The facility builds the Nissan Rogue, Pathfinder, Murano, Leaf, Maxima as well as the new Infiniti QX60.
GM adds more down time at Orion plan
General Motors extended the shutdown of the company’s electric-vehicle assembly plant in Orion, Michigan for another two weeks while GM and battery partner LG Chem fix a manufacturing problem at a South Korean manufacturing plant.
“We notified Orion employees the plant would be down the next two weeks due to a battery pack shortage from LG due to bolt recall. They were down this week due to a shortage of semiconductor chips,” GM spokesman Dan Flores said in an email.
A manufacturing problem by LG Chem’s battery subsidiary, LG Energy, is blamed for two major recalls of the Bolt EV. The first recall earlier this summer, involving 69,000 Bolt EVs, trimmed GM’s second-quarter earnings by $800 million.
The second recall earlier this month involves 73,000 Bolts, including 2022 models and is expected to cost $1 billion, possibly putting a crimp in GM’s ambitious plans to build 30 new electric vehicles by 2025.
New cuts at Stellantis and Ford
Unifor, the union representing Canadian Auto Workers, tweeted last weekend Stellantis is extending the shutdown of its Windsor Assembly plant for another two weeks, starting Aug. 30.
Unifor Local 444 says it’s been informed by the company the facility will be down the weeks of Aug. 30 and Sept. 6. The shortage of semiconductors has forced Stellantis to close the Windsor plants for several weeks this year as shifts its supplies of microchips to other models.
Starting Aug. 30, Ford lengthened the shutdown of its Kansas City, Missouri assembly plant, which builds the critical F-150 pickup. Ford also said its temporarily closing plant building SUVs in Oakville, Ontario, curtailing production of the Ford Edge and Lincoln Nautilus built at the plant.
Earlier this month, Toyota confirmed it is trimming production its assembly plant worldwide by 40%.