More Car Companies Shut Down Operations
One by one, car companies are gradually shutting down operations in their various factories around the world due to Covid-19.
A great example of this is Ford Motor Company, whom after ceasing operations in their UK and Europe plants, has now decided to temporarily suspend vehicle and engine production at its International Markets Group (IMG) manufacturing sites in response to the growing impact of the virus.
The IMG production suspensions began on Saturday, March 21, and will continue for several weeks depending on the pandemic situation, national restrictions, supplier constraints and dealer stock requirements.
“The health and safety of our employees, dealers, customers, partners and communities is our highest priority,” said Mark Ovenden, president of International Markets Group. “We are continuing to act in real time and taking added safety measures by temporarily halting production at our manufacturing sites in the international markets.”
While Ford continues to monitor the situation, the company is also adjusting its original IMG production schedule and will temporarily suspend production market by market. The last working day per market is as follows:
- March 21: India — Chennai Vehicle Assembly Plant, Sanand Vehicle Assembly Plant, Sanand Engine Plant and Chennai Engine Plant.
- March 26: Vietnam — Ford Vietnam Limited Haiduong Assembly Plant.
- March 27: Thailand — Ford Motor Company (Thailand) Limited.
- March 27: South Africa —Silverton Assembly Plant (Pretoria) and Struandale Engine Plant (Port Elizabeth).
These safety measures follow actions previously announced by Ford, including the temporary suspension of vehicle and engine production in North America, Europe and South America. Ford is also requiring employees to work remotely unless they are tasked to perform a business-critical job that requires being onsite. The company’s work from home policy will continue until further notice in a continued effort to help reduce further contamination and spread of the virus. Ford assured that precautionary measures are being taken to protect the safety of the small number of employees who are unable to work from home.
“In these extraordinary times, we must come together to put our people first,” Ovenden said. “We will continue working across our region to explore additional protocols and procedures to help prevent the spread of the virus and define new work practices to lessen its effects wherever we can.”
Another company that has recently shut down some of its operations is Hyundai.
In their official press release, Hyundai Motors said: “The safety, health and well-being of Hyundai employees, customers, business partners and the communities where we do business is of the utmost importance during the current coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic. Hyundai has established a coronavirus (COVID-19) response team at all affiliated companies to monitor the situation, minimize the risks and prepare for all potential scenarios.”
Some of the initiatives taken by Hyundai Motor America’s include:
- Hyundai Hope On Wheels® (HHOW) donated $2 million to children’s hospitals throughout U.S. to support coronavirus (COVID-19) Drive-Thru Testing Centers
- Reinstated the Hyundai Assurance Job Loss Protection program
- Hyundai will make up to six months of payments for new owners who lose their jobs and have purchased or leased their vehicle between March 14 to April 30, 2020 through Hyundai Motor Finance
- For select new purchases through April 30 financed by Hyundai Motor Finance, Hyundai is deferring payments for 90 days at the customer’s request
- Current Hyundai Motor Finance customers can defer payments up to three months if they lose their job or face a medically-related hardship before April 30, 2020
- Offering a complimentary three month extension of Hyundai’s Blue Link® Connected Care service, which includes SOS Emergency Assistance, Enhanced Roadside Assistance and Automatic Collision Notification, for customers with accounts expiring March 20 through the end of May
- All employees are working from home
- Providing all full-time employees up to 10 extra days of paid time off for those directly impacted by the coronavirus
- Offering short term vehicle leases for employees with college students who can benefit from temporary transportation while they are home during school closures.