How Does the Chip Shortage Affect Cars?
Why is There a Microchip Shortage?
If you’ve been driving around the area lately, you might have noticed there are far fewer new vehicles for sale at almost every dealership. This isn’t because people stopped wanting new cars, though life during COVID has caused many of us to drive less. The main culprit for such a lack of inventory comes down to a global shortage of computer chips. Modern cars, trucks and SUVs are basically big computers that are powered by internal combustion engines. A lack of microchips to bring those computers to life means automakers can’t make new vehicles. Our team of product experts thought it would be helpful to try to explain why this is happening.
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Where did the Microchips go?
Obviously, the world is still recovering from the effects of COVID-19 and the devastation it wrought. All kinds of manufacturing facilities were forced to be idle for a long time, while at the same time people stuck at home ordered more electronics. More than one economist has labelled this a perfect storm. Even as things have slowly opened back up, the die was already cast. The world didn’t have enough microchips to accommodate every industry that requires them, which is a lot of different industries.
Automakers need to predict how many vehicles they will build each year and place orders for microchips accordingly. When the production of cars was interrupted, orders were cancelled, and many manufacturers were forced to go to the back of the line.
Even now, chipmakers are ramping back up, but the supply chain is interrupted at a lot of points, including huge ports in several countries. Shipping ports are where the chips come off of cargo ships and are loaded onto trucks to be sent to their ultimate destination. Oh, there is also a shortage of truck drivers in a lot of areas.
When will Things go Back to Normal?
Signs are promising that we are creeping back toward regular production, and we could be on the cusp of normalcy. An article from Popular Science magazine quoted several experts with widely differing opinions. Some people estimate the chip shortage could be resolved as soon as early 2022. Others are less optimistic.
Southside Dodge is doing everything we can to provide our customers with the best possible inventory we can get to land at our showroom. Make an appointment with one of our product experts today if you want to see what we have available. If you don’t see what you want on the day you visit, our team can complete an order to submit directly to the manufacturer.