British luxury SUV maker Land Rover has suspended production of Defender and Discovery in Slovakia due to the semiconductor crisis. With this, Land Rover joined the list of car manufacturers that have been hit by the global chip shortage. Earlier this year, several automakers around the world were forced to temporarily halt production due to a supply chain issue.
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The Land Rover plant in Nitra, Slovakia produces the Defender and the seven-seater Discovery. It is the latest JLR factory to be affected by the chip shortage, reports the Times.
Earlier in 2021, JLR shut down production lines at the Castle Bromwich and Halewood factories in the UK. This impacted the production of the Jaguar XE, XF and F-Type, as well as the Land Rover Discovery Sport and the Range Rover Evoque.
The automaker has given no deadline for the plant to reopen. The Slovak factory has an annual production capacity of 150,000 units. Due to the shutdown of production, the wait time for the Land Rover Defender is expected to increase significantly. Currently, the waiting period of the SUV is almost a year.
Speaking about the chip crisis earlier this year, Jaguar Land Rover CEO Thierry Bolloré said the automaker aims to source its own electrical components directly from the producer. However, this effort has been affected by the global chip crisis.
During last year’s pandemic, the demand for personal electronic goods increased dramatically. This has resulted in a massive demand for microchips, which has caused chip producers to channel their resources into the production of semiconductors for the electronics industry. After economies around the world reopened, the auto industry began to face a semiconductor shortage.