When the pandemic first hit countries all over the world, production at almost every car factory was definitely affected or outright stopped.
With demand and sales for cars facing a decline, leading semiconductor suppliers switched their production from automotive to other customer industries such as consumer electronics. But with car markets slowly recovering from the pandemic, there is now a shortage of semiconductors.
One of the biggest auto brands affected by the semiconductor bottleneck is Volkswagen, which recently announced that they have to adjust global production. The lack of availability of semiconductor products is already causing production constraints in Volkswagen's factories in China, North America, and Europe. With it, the company said that they will adapt production changes in the said locations in Q1 of 2021.
This affects the vehicles based on the MQB platform of Volkswagen passenger cars and commercial vehicles, as well as those made by SEAT, Skoda, and Audi. Semiconductor manufacturers have already responded to this issue and already making necessary changes to speed up production. But with production in China now fully-recovered, overall auto production could be interrupted still.
“We have come through the crisis well so far, thanks to excellent procurement and production management. However, we are now feeling the effects of the global shortages in semiconductors. We do everything to keep production downtimes as low as possible so that we can supply our customers as quickly as possible,” said Murat Aksel, designated board member for purchasing in Volkswagen AG.
What could this mean for Volkswagen models sold in the Philippines? Well, it could result in delays in the delivery of units bound for the country. One of the nameplates that could be affected by the issue is the Lavida as it sits on the MQB platform.
There's no word yet as to when the supply for semiconductors will normalize. But with suppliers making headway to make more semiconductors, perhaps the shortage will be met sometime in the middle of 2021.
Hopefully, other automakers will not be affected by the shortage of semiconductors.