This story was updated at 5:38 p.m. on Tuesday, May 18, 2021, with more information.
For the second time in two months, Volkswagen Chattanooga will suspend production due to the ongoing global semiconductor shortage, according to the automaker.
The VW plant will suspend assembly during the weeks of June 7 and June 14, with regular production restarting June 21, the company said.
During the suspension, manufacturing departments will implement planned line and quality improvements, readiness activities for future production of its ID.4 electric SUV, and on-the-job training, according to VW.
Early this month, the VW factory stopped assembly on a Friday and a Monday around a weekend for the same reason.
Amanda Plecas, head of communications at the Chattanooga operation, said then that because of the increasing demand for consumer electronics for uses such as working from home, coupled with the recovering auto markets, a supply bottleneck has arisen at production plants in the industry.
VW's Chattanooga operations employ more than 4,000 people and is hiring more workers to meet demand to produce the Passat sedan and Atlas and Atlas Cross Sport SUVs. Also, VW is investing $800 million to produce the new battery-powered SUV in 2022.
Tom du Plessis, Volkswagen Chattanooga's chief executive, said recently that the plant likely will have its best-ever year in terms of volume assembly in 2021.
During the last suspension, all Volkswagen Chattanooga salaried, indirect, maintenance, ID.4 pre-series activities and battery assembly shop teams continued to operate as normal, Plecas said then.
At Volkswagen's plant in Mexico, production of the Jetta sedan and Tiguan SUV has been suspended this month, according to the company. VW said in a statement that "we assume the chip supply will continue to be complex in the coming months."
The shortage has already forced Ford to build F-150 pickup trucks without some onboard computers, according to the Associated Press.
The trucks will be held at factories for "a number of weeks," then shipped to dealers once computers are available and quality checks are done.
The global semiconductor shortage forced Honda and Toyota to announce production cuts at some North American factories. General Motors also has been forced to build pickups without some computers and install them later.
Contact Mike Pare at firstname.lastname@example.org.