By on February 19, 2020

Nissan titan assembly Canton Factory

It wasn’t long ago — just a day, actually — that Nissan’s already embattled CEO told shareholders he’d happily be fired if the company’s turnaround efforts fall flat.

Less than a week after posting its first quarterly loss in a decade, Nissan now fears that a supply chain disruption born of the Chinese coronavirus outbreak could idle plants worldwide. It’s the last thing the company needs.

Company sources who spoke with Bloomberg claim the automaker fears its supply of numerous components will dry up if state-mandated shutdowns progress beyond February 20th. The automaker sources some 800 parts from factories in Hubei province, the manufacturing-heavy epicenter of the outbreak.

While many plants will be allowed to come back online on the 21st, Nissan can’t be sure all locales will turn on the lights. The uncertainty is no doubt leading to sleepless nights among company brass, as the sources say Japanese assembly of certain models could grind to a halt by February 23rd. Indonesian production could be hit not long after, followed by Nissan plants elsewhere, including in North America.

Nissan has already had to idle a Japanese plant for two days due to the supply chain chaos spreading through the industry. The company’s not alone in its fear, as Hyundai and Fiat Chrysler recently shut down plants in South Korea and Serbia for the same reason. General Motors was forced to defend its ability to continue domestic truck output after a UAW local suggested the automaker might soon have to idle its most profitable plants.

According to Bloomberg’s sources, Nissan leaned on China’s all-powerful communist government to grant plants the ability to reopen if appropriate safety measures are put in place. One of the company’s own joint venture facilities came back online this week.

[Image: Nissan]

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23 Comments on “The Hits Never Stop: Nissan Fears Plant Shutdowns Amid Parts Disruption...”


  • avatar
    redgolf

    That may just help them save on payroll, they can shut lines down and force their workers to take vacation /sick days off, temps can stay home without pay! It also gives them plenty of time to do maintenance!

  • avatar
    Hummer

    I have no sympathy to Nissan, etc, they made their bed, as did everyone else that took work away from the countries that bought their vehicles.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      “I have no sympathy to Nissan”

      Sure, Nissan et al knew what they would expose themselves to when they outsourced to the lowest cost bidder but a pandemic-driven slump is something that everyone would hope to avoid.

      There’s just no way to prepare for a pandemic but these days the interdependence of industry on global suppliers is much worse than during the Spanish Flu pandemic last century.

      Talk about impact! Apple announced it would fail to meet forecast because of this pandemic, and Apple is a far greater and more influential company than ANY automaker on this planet.

    • 0 avatar
      Carrera

      Where is Deadweight when you need him? He will probably agree that Guangzhou Motors will be probably hurt the most and have to idle plants within a week or two. Everything is real time inventory, no one has anything stocked up. My local grocery store has a big refrigerator out for three weeks. It sits idle. Awaiting on parts…hmmm…I wonder from where? Sweeden? Noooo.

  • avatar
    dont.fit.in.cars

    Conspiracy theory alert…’China released the coronavirus because their economy is failing and needs a diversion. Global supply chain is shifting and the US consumer is no longer China’s ATM machine.

    Now return to the schedule programming.

  • avatar
    Carrera

    I know it isn’t just Nissan doing this but this should be a lesson to all. The less Chinese junk you put into your US, or Japanese or wherever made cars, the more better off you will be. Plenty of countries in Eastern Europe have long tradition in making good automotive parts. Countries such as Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Serbia, Romania. Chasing the cheapest possible suppliers does have consequences.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      It may surprise some people to learn that many car parts including the steel and aluminum in their cars Hecho en Mexico comes from China.

      I always look at the first digit of the VIN on a vehicle. If it is not a 1, 4 or 5, it ain’t Made in the US of A.

      Leave it for someone else to buy.

      • 0 avatar
        Carrera

        Of course Highdesertcat. GM..and others get their Chinese crap sent straight to Mexico. The new Nafta is trying to address some of this issue. You make it in Mexico? Better use North American parts.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          Carrera, the US negotiators were not able to include the North American-made parts clause into the USMCA, and that’s why a number of commenters on ttac have written that the USMCA is not that much different from the old NAFTA.

          But at least the USMCA is a step in the right direction.

          I choose to avoid buying vehicles where the VIN does not start with a 1, 4, or 5.

          • 0 avatar
            Carrera

            Wow…that’s a big blow. I thought the North-American parts clause passed…or…the number increased.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Carrera,

            https://usmca.com/

            if you have an interest in reading it.

            It is NOT effective yet but still has to be ratified, although the industry-think is that it will be ratified.

      • 0 avatar
        Art Vandelay

        Meh, done my bit for God and Country, I’ll drive whatever the &^%$ I want thank you!

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    This should save Nissan a lot of money and give them a chance to sell their bloated inventory. This should also help GM as well and give GM a chance to cut some more products. Most consumers would hardly noticed if both GM and Nissan went away.

  • avatar

    So it turns out the “true American” companies like Nissan, Honda and Toyota also have content made in China, Japan and who knows where else, not only “evil” foreign companies like Ford and GM.

  • avatar
    Schurkey

    They did business with Communists, they’re getting what they deserve. With luck, it’ll nearly bankrupt them.

  • avatar
    redgolf

    Anybody talking here on meds? READ – The Food and Drug Administration estimates that at least 80 percent of the active ingredients found in all of America’s medicines come from abroad – primarily China.May 30, 2019

    • 0 avatar
      Schurkey

      The faster and harder China collapses, the sooner those ingredients will be made in stable, “free-world” countries. Preferably USA-Canada; but there’s plenty of other options.

      For that matter, an EPIC failure of China might bring substantial manufacturing back “home”.

  • avatar
    thornmark

    that must be good news for Nissan – they can blame collapsing sales on external forces and manage their excess inventory

    didn’t GM just do that on a lesser scale w/ the strike

    how’s that new Corvette really doing?

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