Dodge muscle cars are taking a break from production over the next few weeks, as the Brampton, Ontario assembly line that produces the Charger and Challenger will be shut down through the end of January, per Reuters. The halt is from a shortage of semiconductors, or computer chips, an issue that has plagued many automakers since the beginning of the Coronavirus pandemic. The latest round of affected automakers includes FCA, Ford, Nissan, Toyota and Honda.
During the pandemic, demand for electronics and vehicles surged ahead of the production of computer chips, and these shortages are obviously still impacting automakers. With so many people still working from home, laptop demand was especially high, and it’s costing carmakers as they bounce back to full production more quickly than many suppliers predicted.
The Brampton, Ontario plant that makes the Dodge Charger and Challenger, plus the Chrysler 300, is being put on hold so the semiconductors can be allocated to more high-profit models in the FCA portfolio. Still, the Toluca, Mexico plant that produces the more mainstream Jeep Compass is shut down through the end of the month as well.
Over at Ford, the Louisville, Kentucky factory that makes the Ford Escape and Lincoln Corsair siblings will be shut down. Even though the Bronco Sport is on the same platform, it’s made in Mexico, and that plant is unaffected. Toyota is throttling down production of the Tundra pickup, while Honda and Nissan are scaling back on their respective Fit and Note compact cars. Currently, General Motors brands are unaffected by the computer chip shortages.
With all automakers rolling out their 2021 models, like the Dodge Challenger and Charger with their mildly revamped model lineups, there’s a chance this could either delay 2021 models or make them significantly more rare over the next few months. Hopefully computer chip suppliers can catch up to demand sooner than later.