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Chip Shortage Forces Toyota to Scale Back Production

Toyota Motor Corp. on Friday (Oct. 15) announced scheduled shutdowns of its Japan production plants in November from one to five days, blaming the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting parts shortage for the halt.

Toyota has been altering its production schedule monthly since August because of the auto chip shortage, which was triggered by the global coronavirus outbreak. The company noted in a message on its corporate website that August’s production was below even the scheduled scaled-back levels.

The company is planning to reach 850,000 to 900,000 units in November, up from 830,000 one year ago and between 500,000 and 600,000 in September and October of 2021. Toyota had initially planned to produce approximately one million units next month to make up for previous production shortfalls, but said it is still experiencing a shortage of some parts.

The company said it is exploring the use of substitutes for the semiconductors “where possible,” because “we expect the shortage of semiconductors to continue in the long term.”

“We will do everything we can to ensure that we deliver as many cars to our customers as quickly as possible,” Toyota said in Friday’s announcement.

Toyota expects to deliver nine million vehicles in fiscal 2022 ending March 31, thanks to the easing of COVID-19 restrictions in southeast Asia and a smaller-than-expected scaleback in September and October.

Related news: Semiconductor Manufacturer to Build New Japanese Chip Factory

On Thursday (Oct. 14), Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) announced it will build a chip manufacturing plant in Japan to boost its production levels during the global semiconductor shortage.

TSMC executives said in The Wall Street Journal report that construction on the new plant will start next year, and it will be ready for mass production late in 2024.

Also read: Apple Eyes Cutting iPhone Production by 10M Units

Meanwhile, Bloomberg reported this week that Apple is likely to scale back its projected iPhone 13 production target by as many as 10 million units because of chip shortages.

The company was looking at producing 90 million new iPhone models in the final three months of the year, but that number is likely to be significantly lower because of the bottleneck.

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