The Honda Greensburg plant opened in 2008.
The Toyota plant in Princeton produces the Highlander SUV. (photo courtesy: Wes Mills)
Three major automakers with assembly plants in Indiana will be shutting down production for several days in response to COVID-19.
American Honda Motor Co. on Wednesday announced it is shutting down all of its production plants in North America, including the assembly plant in Greensburg, through March 30 because of coronavirus concerns. General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM), which has multiple Indiana facilities, also detailed plans to suspend manufacturing operations.
Honda the move is made in anticipation of market decline due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Greensburg plant assembles the CR-V sports utility vehicle and the Honda Civic.
Honda says it will suspend production for six days beginning March 23. The company’s 27,600 associates across North America will continue to receive full pay during the shutdown.
“As the market impact of the fast-changing COVID-19 situation evolves, Honda will continue to evaluate conditions and make additional adjustments as necessary,” said the company in a statement.
Production will be reduced by 40,000 vehicles per day during the six-day span, according to the company. Honda’s transmission and engine plants that serve the assembly plants are also suspending production.
“In undertaking this production adjustment, Honda is continuing to manage its business carefully through a measured approach to sales that aligns production with market demand,” continued the statement.
Wednesday afternoon, Toyota announced it is temporarily suspending production at all of its automobile and components plants in North America, including the Toyota Motor Manufacturing Indiana plant in Princeton. The manufacturing facilities will be closed from March 23-24, resuming production on March 25, according to the company statement.
“We will conduct a thorough cleaning at all of our manufacturing facilities during the shutdown. This also will allow Toyota employees to prepare and adjust family plans in relation to regional directives to close schools. The safety and security of our employees, stakeholders and community are a top priority and we will continue to monitor the situation and take action in a timely manner,” said a statement from Toyota.
The Princeton plant is the number one producer of the company’s Highlander SUV. TMMI employs about 5,500 Hoosiers.
GM says it is suspending operations due to market conditions and to deep clean facilities in an effort to protect its employees. Like Honda, GM says the suspension will last until at least March 30. “Production status will be reevaluated week-to-week after that,” the company said in a statement.
“GM and the UAW have always put the health and safety of the people entering GM plants first, and we have agreed to a systematic, orderly suspension of production to aid in fighting COVID-19/coronavirus,” said GM Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra. “We have been taking extraordinary precautions around the world to keep our plant environments safe and recent developments in North America make it clear this is the right thing to do now.”
GM has facilities in Fort Wayne, Bedford, Marion and Kokomo.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, which recently announced a major expansion in Kokomo, also says it will suspend production through the end of March.
“Working with the UAW, and having visited many of our plants yesterday, we need to ensure employees feel safe at work and that we are taking every step possible to protect them,” FCA Chief Executive Officer Mike Manley said in a news release Wednesday. “We will continue to do what is right for our people through this period of uncertainty.”
We have not yet heard back from Subaru of Indiana Automotive which employs 6,000 employees at its facility in Lafayette.