COVID-19 shut down 93% of all US auto production

The coronavirus outbreak led automakers to suspend production, here's how widely it's spread.

Sean Szymkowski
It all started with Gran Turismo. From those early PlayStation days, Sean was drawn to anything with four wheels. Prior to joining the Roadshow team, he was a freelance contributor for Motor Authority, The Car Connection and Green Car Reports. As for what's in the garage, Sean owns a 2016 Chevrolet SS, and yes, it has Holden badges.
Sean Szymkowski
2 min read
2019 Ford Ranger production
Enlarge Image
2019 Ford Ranger production

Auto production came to screeching halt as of March 20.


Since March 16, Roadshow has rounded up every automaker that announced a production suspension in the US and Europe as the  coronavirus , which causes COVID-19, spreads globally. The initial figure was four automakers on the initial date of publication. That list is now up to 25 companies.

Sobering statistics put into perspective just how vast the work stoppage is across the US. The Alliance for Automotive Innovation released figures relevant as of March 26 that show 93% of all US auto production is now offline. That includes Ford, General Motors and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, along with other foreign automakers with operations in here such as Honda, and Volkswagen .

Needless to say, this sends reverberations through the entire supply chain. Without cars rolling off assembly lines, there's simply no need for more nuts, bolts and other widgets.

The alliance also looked at how production shutdowns shook out for figures across the entire North American continent. With plant operations on hiatus in the US, Canada and Mexico, 80% of all North American production is now offline. That, readers, is an immense percentage. By the alliance's count, there are just two plants in the US still operating, though it's unclear which they are. Across all of North America, only 14 plants remain online.

Unfortunately, it seems like they won't be up and running as quickly as automakers want, either. Many automakers continue to delay the reopening of automobile production, but some are now making personal protective equipment. Every automaker promised the shutdowns will lead to thorough disinfecting measures and deep cleans, but first and foremost, it wants its workers healthy.

To help suppliers, dealers and other business impacted, the alliance called on the US government to implement a few measures. It asked the government to delay quarterly federal tax payments and provide tax credits to companies with more than 500 employees that offer paid sick leave to ensure they remain employed. The biggest ask of all? A delay in implementing new measures found in the NAFTA-replacing USMCA trade agreement.

Watch this: Coronavirus lockdown: Why social distancing saves lives

Coronavirus in pictures: Scenes from around the world

See all photos

First published March 24.