A cluster of chain reactions continues delaying car deliveries. What began as something temporary, due to the pandemic situation, continues to stretch like chewing gum despite the reactivation of activity. Dealers and manufacturers testify how delivery times for new vehicles are already delayed until August, sources in the sector acknowledge. They are exceptional cases, models that incorporate extra functionalities and high doses of technology.. “A particular model of a brand can go to the second half of 2022 & rdquor;, recognize Gerardo Perez, president of the dealer association, Faconauto.
The problem that has dynamited purchases in the automotive sector persists: the lack of semiconductor materials. Although, on average, vehicle deliveries continue to follow a waiting period that ranges from four to six months, Pérez points out. “We are not managing dates after the second quarter of 2022 & rdquor ;, he says. Carlos Miranda, branch manager of Stellantis & You Vigo. “That would be the worst case.”
The technological load is transversal to the bulk of current car models. It happens, however, that some specific equipment causes the delivery of the car to be delayed even more. The semiconductor shortage has created a chain reaction and the lack of microchips has only worsened in recent months. The Most of these semiconductors come from Taiwan and South Korea, But the plants dedicated to this task cannot cope with the enormous growth in demand after the lockdowns. And that the automotive industry concentrates only 12% of the world demand for microchips. The consequence: the manufacture of cars in Spain has fallen by 32.2% compared to the same period of the previous year. A collapse that, according to the latest estimates by brands, could extend beyond mid-2023.
The relocation of microchip production plays a fundamental role in this whole situation. Nothing is accidental. Nor is the fact that European and American brands are being more affected by the situation than their Korean counterparts. The factories that are in Asia have fewer problems because they are closer to the microchip production centers and the raw material of these components, sources explain the sector, which facilitates the supply. It contributes, and in a substantial way, that these brands participate in the capital of some of the microprocessor factories and that, during the confinement by the pandemic, they were not forced to paralyze the orders and, therefore, the production. The combination of these three factors improves the supply of you teach Korean automobile shows, although “it is beginning to be affected in some & rdquor ;, Perez acknowledges.
The long countdown has become somewhat normalized for some customers. And waiting is already part of the equation to consider when buying a car. There are three most common cases when considering the acquisition of a vehicle. And while the most predictable is resignation and waiting, there has also been a transfer to the used vehicle. Customers scan the second-hand market for vehicles less than a year old to which to redirect your interest, says Pérez. The third option to avoid waiting times is for consumers to adapt to market availability and the meager stock of vehicles.
Despite these months of tension, the situation seems to be clearing up in a way. Miranda advances that this time horizon of obtaining a car is clarified: “Atime we are able to determine the specific delivery times& rdquor ;. Until now, there was some complexity to establish these dates, but “we have gained in efficiency and clarity for the client & rdquor ;. In addition, the manager of Stellantis & You Vigo advances, in some brands the delivery time has been reduced to two months. All this without forgetting that the Stellantis plant in Vigo has already begun negotiations with the unions to execute a temporary employment regulation file (ERTE) in 2022 due to the lack of supply of components. The one that will become the third ERTE in the factory since the beginning of the pandemic. It should be remembered that the Balaídos factory has months of productive stoppages.
Faced with this increase in tension, brands have tried to adjust customer demands to the stock supply available to them. And they leave aside, as far as possible, their claims to sell to manufacturing. “Before the car was more personalized, now less & rdquor ;, say industry sources about the formula to streamline purchase and sale operations.
Normalization in the second half of 2022
It will not be until the second half of 2022 (and almost in 2023) that the situation in the automotive sector begins to normalize, according to sources in the sector. Opinions are, however, disparate given the uncertainty arising from an unprecedented situation. “We should see a more stabilized supply in the second half of 2022 & rdquor ;, estimates the president of Faconauto, Gerardo Pérez. “Delivery times will be significantly reduced & rdquor ;. Although a ‘normality’ is not expected until mid-2023.
Gerardo Pérez: “We are beginning to notice affectation in some Korean brands & rdquor;
In a similar direction it points Carlos Miranda, branch manager of Stellantis & You Vigo. “In the second half of 2022, the deadlines will normalize, but we cannot guarantee that there will not be another distortion in the market that causes a & rdquor; displacement. Industry experts do not point to a recovery of the usual dynamics of semiconductor factories until mid-2023. Already this year alone, nine million vehicles will be stopped, which will mean an industrial cost of 182,000 million euros, according to the reports.
To try to ease this bottleneck a bit, some manufacturers have chosen to put on the table to their customers the possibility of having the vehicle delivered without the missing component, always with the condition that it will be installed later. At the moment with few brands that do. A provisional solution arises only in cases in which the omission of this device does not compromise either the safety or the proper functioning of the vehicle. This formula to expedite the delivery of the new vehicle is conceived only for what could be called car extras.
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