Coronavirus: UK and global car market could be impacted due to loss of car parts and sales
Coronavirus warnings have forced car firms to slash production due to factors such as a loss of vital car parts. Jaguar Land Rover became the latest casualty after closing its Chinese factory situated just 500 miles from the epicentre of the crisis in Wuhan.
The British car manufacturer said the Changsha plant had been temporarily closed on local government advice.
The factory builds fleets of Range Rover Evoque, Land Rover Discovery Sport and Jaguar E-Pace models for the Chinese market.
Special versions of the Jaguar XE and XF are also built for Chinese buyers in the special plant which employs over 2,000 workers.
In a statement, Land Rover said: “At Jaguar Land Rover, the health of our employees is important to us and we continue to monitor the coronavirus situation in China.
“We are following Foreign Office guidelines regarding travel from the UK to China.
“In China, we are following the local government’s advice and have closed our operations as recommended.”
The loss of productions and car sales across key Asian markets could have a major effect on the firm.
The UK manufacturer announced profits of £318million in Q3 late last year but this was partly achieved with a 24.3 percent boost in Chinese sales.
Land Rover has revealed the outbreak of the killer bug could affect its end of year results for the financial year in a devastating blow.
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Volkswagen have also closed their Chinese plants due to travel restrictions while General Motors revealed their Chinese plants will not reopen until the weekend due to supply chain issues.
A lack of car parts has also caused devastation away from China with manufacturers struggling to finish their models on the production line.
Nissan has been forced to temporarily close its Japanese factory after key parts could not be sourced from China.
The factory produces some of the firm’s most popular models such as the Serena and X-Trail SUV.
Hyundai and Renault have also been forced to temporarily suspend production in their South Korean factories over a loss of vital parts.
Fiat Chrysler warned a shortage of parts could even shut down one of their European plants over the coming weeks.
Mike Dunne, former Head of General Motors operations in Indonesia and consultant to the motoring industry in Asia warned it only takes “one missing part” to bring production lines to a shattering halt.
China is one of the world’s largest suppliers of car parts for the global motoring industry,
Data from the United Nations shows the country shipped almost £27billion in parts in 2018 alone.
Simon MacAdam, spokesperson for Capital Economics said: “A supply chain is only as strong as the weakest link. That's why there's such uncertainty about estimates."
Several car firms have already reopened their factories to reduce the overall impact of coronavirus on the business.
Ford has resumed production across two of their Chinese plants but a spokesman confirmed it was unclear when all six facilities in the country would reopen to their full capacity,
Tesla has also reopened their Shanghai factory but has predicted up to a week and a half's delay on the production of models due to the virus.
Honda was due to resume production at its Wuhan factory while Toyota was hoping to restart production at their Chinese factories this week.