Dogged by shortages of semiconductors, as well as a new wave of COVID-19 lockdowns at plants in China, Toyota Motor Co. is continuing to reduce vehicle production.
“We at Toyota have made repeated production plan adjustments due to a parts shortage resulting from the spread of COVID-19, causing considerable inconvenience to customers and others concerned,” Toyota said in a statement released this week.
“We must now inform you of additional production suspension in March due to the semiconductor shortages. We again offer our sincerest apologies to our customers and suppliers for any inconvenience these adjustments may cause.”
Cuts on top of adjustments
Toyota officials revealed the additional production cuts in March due to a shortage of semiconductor chips, days after the Japanese automaker reduced its domestic production target by as much as 20% for the April-June quarter, according to Japan Times.
The company said it would suspend production on one line at a factory for eight days between March 22 and 31. That is in addition to the suspension of domestic production at two factories announced last month.
Last week, Toyota said it would lower production for three months starting in April to ease the strain on suppliers, which were struggling with the shortages of chips and other parts, the Japan Times said.
Ransomware attacks hamper suppliers
The production problems are exacerbated by a ransomware attack on a key Toyota supplier, Denso.
Due to a system failure at a Kojima Industries Corp., Toyota suspended operations on all 28 lines at 14 domestic plants in Japan for one day earlier this month.
This week Denso, one of the world’s largest suppliers and one of the world’s largest automotive suppliers, confirmed it also had been hit by a ransomware attack. Denso apparently was targeted by group of hackers threatening to disclose its industrial secrets unless the Japanese maker of electronic auto parts paid ransom money, national broadcaster NHK reported.
Denso said the attacks have not had any impact on production at Toyota or other customers, which include a broad array of global automakers.