Analysts very early on predicted that the Russia-Ukraine armed conflict would have serious negative effects on industry supply chains and that it would affect car companies’ plans and their outputs. Well, one of the first manufacturers to announce a war-related problem is Volkswagen, which has just confirmed to the German press that it will be pulling certain plug-in hybrid models from its lineup because it will temporarily stop building them.
According to Automoitive News Europe which quotes Automobilwoche, VW announced that it was no longer taking orders for the plug-in hybrid versions of the Golf, Passat, Arteon, Tiguan and Touareg. It even said that there’s a good chance some people who had already put their order for one of these vehicles in may not take delivery of it by the end of 2022.
Delivery times for some VWs were already close to a year long, in part due to the ongoing semiconductor shortage that was already plaguing the industry. And even though neither Russia nor Ukraine were major markets for the automaker, they are a source for many raw materials and they also manufacture some necessary components.
Audi will also stop taking orders for some of its plug-in hybrids after March 10, since it plans to pause production of A4, A5, A6 and A7 PHEVs. Porsche has also announced production pauses all throughout march and other group brands will surely announce similar moves soon, if they haven't done so already.
Volkswagen also announced that it was stopping all production (as well as sales) in Russia and it idled many of its main plants in Germany and other European locations as well. Other German manufacturers, like BMW and Mercedes-Benz also applied similar measures, after previously announcing they were leaving the Russian market not long after the Ukraine crisis began.
Meanwhile, production at VW’s Zwickau plant, where EVs under several brands are built (VW, Audi, Cupra) is also being idled until March 18. No cars are currently being made at VW’s home factory in Wolfsburg either - that’s where the Golf, Tiguan and Touran models are made.
Source: Automotive News Europe via Automobilwoche