- Photo via Wikimedia/Anonyme

Photo via Wikimedia/Anonyme

General Motors, Ford, and Fiat Chrysler will suspend production at North American manufacturing facilities to fight the spread of COVID-19/coronavirus, according to press statements and news reports.

Both GM and Ford stated their suspensions will last until at least March 30. GM stated its production status will be reevaluated week-to-week after that. Ford said its plants will shut down after Thursday evening shifts.

A factory worker at Ford’s assembly plant in Wayne, Mich. has tested positive for coronavirus/COVID-19.

Fiat Chrysler had closed its Sterling Heights Assembly Plant Tuesday night for deep cleaning, according to a statement sent to the Detroit Free Press. An employee had tested positive for COVID-19 at the facility, which makes the Ram 1500. An announcement regarding the plant’s reopening is pending.

The closures come after the United Auto Workers requested on Tuesday that the Big 3 automakers cease production for the next two weeks. 

Hyundai confirmed a case of COVID-19 at its Alabama manufacturing plant and has suspended production at the plant starting today.

Tesla, however, will continue to keep its Fremont, Calif., plant open. TechCrunch reports that the EV automaker had conflicting guidance regarding a shelter-in place order in Alameda County.

Honda Motor Co. has temporarily closed its North American factories for one week starting on Wednesday.

Other foreign manufacturers, including Volkswagen, BMW, Nissan, Toyota, and Mercedes-Benz have not yet announced plant closures of their North American facilities.

Update 3/18: Fiat Chrysler said in a statement it will cease production at plants across North America starting today through the end of March. ​BMW reported it is closing its U.S. plants as well.

Update 3/19: Nissan announced that it will temporarily suspend production of its manufacturing facilities in the U.S. starting March 20 through April 6. Toyota is temporarily suspending production at all of its automobile and components plants in North America, including Canada, Mexico and the U.S., though its shutdown is short: Toyota reported its manufacturing facilities will be closed from March 23-24, resuming production on March 25, 2020. The service parts depots and vehicle logistics centers will continue to operate. Tesla will shut down its California and New York plans on March 23. 

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