File picture: Jure Makovec / AFP.
File picture: Jure Makovec / AFP.

Renault to cut output by 500 000 cars this year due to chip shortage

By Reuters Time of article published Oct 22, 2021

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Paris - Renault announced on Friday that it would cut output by 500 000 cars this year, more than double its previous forecast due to a crippling global semiconductor shortage, but the company maintained its profit outlook, helped by higher car prices and cost cuts.

During a presentation to analysts, Renault Chief Financial Officer Clotlide Delbos said the carmaker's visibility on the chip shortage in the fourth quarter was "still very poor because the information coming from suppliers is very unreliable."

Delbos said the chip shortage should ease a little by the end of the year with the end of a Covid-19 lockdown in Malaysia,central to global chip supplies, but said it would remain constrained throughout much of 2022.

When asked about other raw materials, she said Renault was not seeing shortages but was facing price increases.

The shortage of chips, used in everything from brake sensors to power steering to entertainment systems, has led carmakers around the world to cut or suspend production, pushing up vehicle prices.

Like its peers, Renault has focused production on more profitable models.

The French carmaker's gloomy forecast is more than double the 220 000 units forecast in early September and represents about 13% of the 3.75 million vehicles Renault sold in 2019before the pandemic.

Sources close to the firm told Reuters this week production losses would be much higher than previously forecast.

The carmaker said its order book hit a 15-year high by the end of September for the equivalent of 2.8 months worth of sales.

CFO Delbos said the wait time for the Dacia Sandero, a popular, low-cost city car, was now six months.

During the third quarter, fully electric, plug-in hybrid and hybrid models made up more than 31% of sales, Renault said.

The carmaker is on track to meet more stringent 2021European CO2 emission targets, it added.

Renault said vehicle inventories had fallen to 340,000 carsat the end of the quarter from 470,000 a year earlier.


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