By Mike Colias and Allison Prang 

General Motors Co. will halt production at several North American factories and extend shutdowns at some others because of a shortage of semiconductor chips that has snarled global automotive output.

The auto maker said Thursday that three plants previously unaffected by the chip shortage will be idled or have output reduced for one or two weeks, including a factory in Tennessee and another in Michigan that make popular midsize sport-utility vehicles. Some of the vehicles the impacted plants build include the Chevrolet Traverse SUV and the Cadillac XT5 and XT6 SUVs.

GM also will extend closures of a Kansas City-area factory and a plant in Ontario until May 10. Both facilities have been closed since February, as GM diverts chips from less-popular models to large pickup trucks and SUVs, which are its biggest profit producers.

The extended shutdowns come as auto makers have been grappling with the semiconductor chip shortage. Global auto makers have been cutting production for months as they scramble to line up chip supplies, with executives saying the shortage could last several more months.

The seeds of the auto industry's chip shortage were planted last spring, when auto makers and suppliers cut their production schedules as the pandemic clouded the outlook for vehicle sales.

Meanwhile, chip producers have been scrambling to keep pace with strong demand from makers of laptops, gaming systems and other electronic devices that have been in high demand, curbing the supply of automotive chips.

Shares of GM were down 2.7% Thursday morning at $59.21 a share.

Write to Mike Colias at Mike.Colias@wsj.com and Allison Prang at allison.prang@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

April 08, 2021 11:05 ET (15:05 GMT)

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