Chinese EV maker NIO halts production as global chip shortage peaks

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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Chinese Electric Vehicle (EV) manufacturer NIO is the latest casualty of the ongoing global semi-conductor chip shortage which has forced many to either halt or slow production of cars, trucks, smartphones, etc. 

NIO is likely to halt its car production line for five working days at its plant in Hefei, China. The carmaker has also reduced its first quarter (Q1) 2021 delivery projection to somewhere around 19,500 units, compared to the 20,000 to 20,500 vehicles it had previously anticipated.

The global semi-conductor shortage has had some form of impact on all walks of life. Traditionally a non-tech segment, the global automotive sector has seen its appetite for semi-conductors grow as vehicles become smarter and transition from conventional combustion-based engines to electric drive trains.

US-based car manufacturer Ford was one of the first industry leaders to acknowledge and anticipate a production bottleneck. The carmaker which had earlier cautioned about the chip shortage affecting production following a bond sale, updated on Thursday (25th March 2021) that it is all set to stop the manufacturing of its popular F-150 pickup truck at its Michigan plant until Sunday (28th March).

Japanese automaker Honda and another Detroit, US-based carmaker General Motors (GM) are other automakers who have announced this week they would continue production suspension at plants in North America for the coming weeks, citing the chip shortage as one of several reasons.

World’s biggest computer-chip manufacturer, Samsung has earlier this month warned of a “serious imbalance” in the semiconductor industry, as global shortages cause disruption. The phone maker hinted that it might skip the launch of the next Galaxy Note smartphone to ensure a streamlined production lineup amid this crisis.

Related: Chinese phone maker Xiaomi to make EVs; Reports