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Toyota, Volkswagen Push Back Restart of North American Production

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Though plans to gradually restart car production North America continue, it’s clear that manufacturers are still feeling their way forward carefully and with hesitation.

Recently, Toyota announced it would be resuming operations at its plants in North America next Monday, May 4. Now the Japanese automaker has decided to push back the restart for another week, until May 11. The company stated that its decision was taken “based on an extensive review with our supplier and logistics network.”

“Toyota intends to gradually resume its manufacturing operations in compliance with federal health and safety guidelines, and local and state ordinances where our facilities are located,” the automaker said in a statement, adding:

“The health and safety of our employees and stakeholders remain a top priority, and we have implemented new protocols at all of our North American manufacturing plants to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.”

- Toyota statement

Toyota suspended production at its North American plants on March 23rd.

A spokesperson said that while some suppliers were able to resume operations on May 4, others would be back on line for the following week. Toyota is planning a gradual return to normal and is even planning several days of training before the assembly of new vehicles restarts.

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Workers at Volkswagen factory in Europe
Photo: Volkswagen
Workers at Volkswagen factory in Europe


The German automaker, which has no plants in Canada, also decided on Wednesday not to restart production on May 4, as originally planned.

The German firm suspended operations at its assembly plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee, on March 21. At the facility the company manufacture the Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport SUVs, as well as the Passat sedan. The automaker has not set a new date for resuming production.

"Before setting a new start date, Volkswagen of America will weigh the readiness of the supplier base, as well as market demand and the status of the COVID-19 outbreak," the automaker said in a statement released Wednesday. "The company will continue to work from an organizational perspective and refine and strengthen the health and safety measures to safeguard our employees."

- Volkswagen statement