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Car and Driver: Aftershock: GM Idling Four North American Plants Due to Japanese Earthquakes


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General Motors announced that it will temporarily idle operations at four of its North American plants as a result of the damaging earthquakes that ravaged Japan late last week.


Despite being nearly half a world away from the quakes’ epicenters, GM’s facilities in Spring Hill, Tennessee; Lordstown, Ohio; Fairfax, Kansas; and Oshawa, Ontario, Canada all will close shop for approximately two weeks beginning next week due to quake-related parts shortages.


Collectively responsible for the production of the Buick LaCrosse, the Buick Regal, the Cadillac XT5, the Cadillac XTS, the Chevrolet Camaro coupe and convertible, the Chevrolet Cruze, the Chevrolet Impala, the Chevrolet Malibu, and the GMC Acadia, GM’s Joanne Krell told Automotive News that the brief closure of these plants, as well as any associated supply-chain issues, will not impact the company’s financial results or full-year production plans. Krill did not address the specific part or parts that caused the shutdown.


The same financial outlook may not apply to other manufacturers affected by the quakes. AN previously reported that Toyota may lose as much as $277 million this quarter due to production halts and factory damage resulting from the natural disaster. Toyota stated that most of its affected assembly lines will resume production throughout next week.


Along with GM, Toyota, and a number of Japanese parts suppliers, both Nissan and Honda also were forced to stop vehicle production as a result of last week’s earthquakes. While Nissan was able to quickly recommence operations, Honda’s motorcycle factory in Kumamoto will remain down until April 28.


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