LONDON -- Jaguar Land Rover production has not yet been hit by the global shortage of semiconductors after it negotiated directly with suppliers, CEO Thierry Bollore said.
Automakers, who are slowly ramping up production after coronavirus lockdowns, have seen their output affected by a shortage in chips as suppliers shifted their focus towards industries that have not been hit as hard by COVID-19, such as makers of smartphones and gaming devices.
"We are not impacted at the moment, because the team is getting in touch with Tier 2, 3 and 4 suppliers to make sure that the allocations are positive," Bollore said on an investor call on Friday.
Microchip suppliers agreed not to cut deliveries to JLR's suppliers because of the company's relatively small size, Bollore said. "We are so small compared to other actors that in fact our allocation doesn't change the picture for the other customers," he said.
Automakers hit by chip shortages in Europe include Volkswagen, which said it has applied for government aid for short-time work at its Wolfsburg, Germany, plant in February. Daimler has applied for short-time work for its Bremen and Rastatt sites in Germany, while production at its plant in Kecskemet, Hungary, will be halted from Jan. 20 to Jan. 30 due to the shortage.
Newer cars, especially electrified versions, need more chips than older models, further squeezing supply.
Nissan's new Qashqai compact SUV, which will be revealed this year, will have 50 percent more sensors than the outgoing model, Ashwani Gupta, the company's chief operating officer, told UK journalists on Jan. 21. The new Nissan Rogue, which will be sold in Europe as the X-Trail, has 70 percent more due to increased number of automated driving assist features on both models, he said.
Gupta predicted that semiconductor supply problems would continue until May.
Nissan said last month that its chip supply was so far unaffected at its Sunderland plant in England.