Responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles announces it will manufacture and donate more than 1 million protective face masks per month to health-care workers in hospitals and clinics, as well as police, firefighters and EMTs.
“Production capacity is being installed this week and the company will start manufacturing face masks in the coming weeks with initial distribution across the United States, Canada and Mexico,” FCA says in a news release.
CEO Mike Manley says FCA also is supporting increased production of ventilators for treatment of patients with severe cases of the virus.
In other automotive industry developments related to COVID-19, supplier BorgWarner announces it is temporarily suspending operations at “certain” of its manufacturing and assembly facilities as the pandemic depresses demand by OEMS, particularly in North America and Europe.
“Significant reductions in automotive or truck production would have an adverse effect on the company’s sales to OEMs in these regions, which comprised approximately 70% of the company’s total sales in 2019,” Auburn Hills, MI-based BorgWarner says in a news release.
“Although the company is currently unable to reasonably estimate the impact of this situation on its 2020 outlook due to the heightened level of uncertainty, the company does expect this situation to have a material impact on its 2020 financial performance and is in the process of reassessing its full-year financial guidance,” the release says.
General Motors announces it is suspending its 2020 guidance due to uncertainty around the business impact of the pandemic.
The automaker, whose manufacturing operations have been suspended until at least March 30, says it will withdraw $16 billion from its revolving credit facilities “to increase GM's cash position and preserve financial flexibility in light of current uncertainty in global markets.
“The funds will supplement the company's strong cash position of approximately $15 billion to $16 billion expected at the end of March,” GM says.
Sports car maker Aston Martin (above, left) becomes one of the latest automakers to suspend production, announcing it is shutting down its Gaydon, U.K., manufacturing operations in line with the latest government instructions on countering the spread of COVID-19.
The shutdown is to last until April 20. But, Aston Martin says, “The business will continue to review the situation and will look to resume operations as soon as it is reasonable to do so.”