BERLIN -- Ford Motor will extend a production stoppage at its factory in Cologne, Germany, until the end of October because of the global shortage of microchips.
The company will not be able to resume production of the Fiesta small hatchback at the plant as planned, a Ford spokesperson told Automotive News Europe sister publication Automobilwoche.
The plant will remain idle until Oct. 31, the spokesman said.
"Due to the still tense situation on the global semiconductor market, supply bottlenecks continue to occur," the spokesman said.
Fiesta production in Cologne has largely been at a standstill since July.
Ford said it was not yet clear whether production could resume in November. The availability of semiconductors on the world market will remain "very volatile" for the foreseeable future, the spokesman said. Ford therefore assumes "that there may always be production stoppages in the foreseeable future."
The Fiesta is the only model built in Cologne. European sales of the hatchback fell 25 percent to 72,276 through August, according to JATO Dynamics market researchers.
The Fiesta is Ford's second-bestseller in Europe after the Puma small crossover built in Romania. Puma sales rose 75 percent to 106,360 in the first eight months.
Ford has said it will sell only full-electric passenger cars in Europe by 2030.
The automaker is investing $1 billion in the Cologne plant to build electric cars based on Volkswagen Group's MEB platform starting in 2023.
Ford's move to extend the production stoppage follows Opel's decision to close its plant in Eisenach, Germany, where the company builds the Grandland X compact SUV, until the end of the year because of the semiconductor shortage.