Despite the huge difficulties the Japanese car industry is facing, analysts say automakers will be able to recover in the year ahead.
As every car owner knows, it only takes one missing part to bring a car to a screeching halt. And the average car contains anywhere from 20,000 to 30,000 parts, many of which – even in American-made cars – come from Japan.
As disaster-hit Japanese automotive manufacturers and parts suppliers struggle to resume operations, the global auto industry hasn't quite come to a standstill, but it is suffering losses in production of hundreds of thousands of vehicles, amounting to billions of dollars.
"We’ve already seen production at GM, Ford, Renault, and Peugeot being disrupted,” says Christopher Richter, a Tokyo-based auto analyst for the Hong Kong-based CLSA investment group. “The auto supply chain is a bit like a house of cards; and there are going to be some surprises popping up in the form of sudden shortages down the line.”
“You’re going to see some very busy plants working all the shifts they can manage to try and get back on track later in the year,” says Mr. Richter.
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