More than a year after its outbreak, the coronavirus keeps finding new ways to hit carmakers.
After first wiping out auto demand, the virus is now hindering parts supply: chips used in vehicles are harder to come by because semiconductor manufacturers allocated more capacity to meet soaring demand from consumer-electronics makers such as Apple Inc.
The shortage risks dragging on, with lockdowns and travel restrictions prompting housebound consumers to snap up more phones, game consoles, smart TVs, and laptops to get online. Lower down in importance to chipmakers, auto manufacturers from Toyota Motor Corp. to Volkswagen AG risk not getting enough goods to fuel a fledgling recovery in their own industry.
“Customers can’t build because they can’t get parts,” … Read the rest...