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Earthquake in Japan and its effects on global car production

in Auto
by Nicole
March 16, 2011 at 3:38 pm

Japanese car makers were not the only ones affected by the earthquake in Japan.

Many car manufacturers in the world will soon have problems because microchip and small batteries manufacturers won’t be able to provide auto components.

Following the tragic events that took place Friday, March 11, in Japan, many automobile and electronic manufacturers have been left without specialized electronic components.

Those components are manufactured in Japan, and the area affected by the earthquake had over 100 suppliers of such components. In addition to Japanese manufacturers, whose production capacity has been affected as of Friday, European and American manufacturers have also suffered from the events that took place in Japan.

The main problem is the impossibility of contacting the respective providers. BMW, Volvo’s truck division and ON Semiconductor Corp. said it’s too early to say whether or not they will be affected by the earthquake in Japan, and the main reason is the lack of information from suppliers and from companies that provide them with raw material.

Honda is trying to get in touch with its suppliers, at least 113 of whom are located in the area affected by the tsunami and earthquake. The people at Honda have failed to make contact with over 40 suppliers in the area, a sign that their factories are either temporarily closed or destroyed by the tsunami.

Nissan recently announced in a statement made by Carlos Ghosn that production might restart in the next two or three days, but the Japanese manufacturer won’t be able to continue at a fast pace because the providers network has been destroyed.

Ford can no longer produce hybrids for the U.S. market because of lack of batteries. Those batteries are manufactured in Japan by Sanyo, and they try to assess the situation to see when it can restart production.

All these car makers are not the only ones affected, as Japan manufactures 14% of the car components used in the USA. The Taiwan and Korean people who produce microchips have announced that they might have problems with production soon because Japan provides over 80% of world’s silicon wafer. The main problems of the suppliers in Japan are connected to the severely damaged infrastructure, as well as to the fact that there are problems with electricity supply.

Source: AutomotiveNews

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