Big Three see more auto plant closures as chip shortage continues

Ford, GM, Stellantis all remain affected by semiconductor chip crisis

Semiconductor chip shortage forces more downtime at auto plants

DETROIT – The computer chip shortage continues to plague the auto industry and is forcing more closures.

Ford Motor Company announced new plant closures. The Big Three all believe the next three months will be the most expensive part of the shortage.

READ: Semiconductor shortage impacts Big Three automakers

Ford said between May 17-24 the Ford Michigan Assembly Plant in Wayne -- which builds the Ranger -- will join Ford Flat Rock Assembly Plant -- where they make the Mustang and Continental.

Between June 7-14, theFord Kentucky Truck Plant Stamping Facility -- where they build the Super Duty pick-ups -- will close.

Over at Stellantis, they’re continuing limited production at Jefferson North Assembly Plant.

GM is updating its current closures by adding the GM Lansing Grand River Assembly to its May 10 to June 28 closures. GM CAMI Assembly in Ontario was already closed and GM Fairfax in Kansas will close through July 5.

“We’re really focused on protecting our highest demand vehicles and those that were constrained to build more and so the full sized truck and SUVS our electric vehicle products and it’s something that gives us confidence,” GM CEO Mary Barra said. “We do feel Q2 will be the weakest of the year and we get a recovery in Q3 & Q4.”

It’s really crimping vehicle availability and driving prices sky high.

“People are going to be paying more for vehicles at least for the remainder of this year and well into 2022 because there is more reward than there is inventory from every manufacturer,” said analyst Sam Abuelsamid. “Discounts are being eliminated.”

One of the other problems we’re seeing with the chip shortage is used car prices are spiking as well. It turns out the rental car companies are having difficulty buying new cars, so they’re snapping up used cars at auctions. The shorter supply means higher prices.

About the Authors:

Rod Meloni is an Emmy Award-winning Business Editor on Local 4 News and a Certified Financial Planner™ Professional.

Dane is a producer and media enthusiast. He previously worked freelance video production and writing jobs in Michigan, Georgia and Massachusetts. Dane graduated from the Specs Howard School of Media Arts.