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Carpet Shortage Halts Car Production

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author photo by Jeffrey Archer September 2011

A carpet shortage has temporarily halted production at six North American Chrysler and General Motors plants.  According to the automakers, the shortage - which affects production of floormats and interior carpeting - was caused by flooding at a key Pennsylvania supplier after Tropical Storm Lee, which made landfall earlier this month.

Located around 140 miles northwest of Philadelphia in rural Bloomsburg, the carpet factory is owned by Swiss automotive supplier Autoneum Holding, which also manufactures important automotive heat management and noise reduction components.  While the plant supplies carpet for several brands’ North American production facilities, its flooding is forcing only Chrysler and General Motors to temporarily cut assembly line shifts - for now.

For Chrysler, the production cuts won’t mean layoffs.  Instead, the automaker is asking employees at its four affected plants (two in Michigan, one in Ohio and one in Ontario, Canada) to continue reporting to work, where the automaker will conduct training.  But the carpet shortage will lead to decreased production of several Chrysler models, including the 200 and 300 sedans, the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Liberty, and the Dodge Avenger, Challenger, Charger, Durango and Nitro.  That could eventually lead to a shortage of those models at dealerships.

While General Motors hasn’t announced plans for its idled employees, the automaker confirmed the carpet shortage affected two of its production facilities.  One idled plant is located in Lansing, Michigan and produces the Cadillac CTS, while the other affected facility is GM’s CAMI Automotive factory, which is located in Ontario, Canada and manufactures the midsize Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Acadia SUVs.

While Autoneum also supplies carpeting for Toyota and Volkswagen facilities, neither automaker has reported impending production cuts.  But if the plant doesn’t return to full production soon, it could mean further production constraints, supply shortages and - in extreme cases - potentially even layoffs for the affected automakers.

This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
Carpet Shortage Halts Car Production - Autotrader