First, carmakers thought the worst of the chip shortage would be in the first half of the year. Then, it was the third quarter. Now, the heads of Volkswagen AG and Daimler AG are pushing back even further their guesses for when the supply issue will stop constraining car production.
“Probably we will remain in shortages for the next months or even years because semiconductors are in high demand,” VW Chief Executive Officer Herbert Diess said Monday on Bloomberg Television. “The internet of things is growing and the capacity ramp-up will take time. It will be probably a bottleneck for the next months and years to come.”
Diess and his Daimler counterpart Ola Kallenius delivered their doses of distress as most of Europe’s carmakers gathered in Munich for the first auto show since before the pandemic hit. Kallenius cautioned on Sunday that the semiconductor shortage may not entirely go away next year and could take until 2023 to be resolved.
VW and Mercedes are among the automakers that have been hit this quarter by factory shutdowns in Malaysia, which in recent years emerged as a major center for chip testing and packaging. Key suppliers including Infineon Technologies AG, NXP Semiconductors NV and STMicroelectronics NV operate plants in the country.