The latest numbers on the automotive microchip shortage

The auto industry’s struggle to acquire adequate supplies of semiconductors continues to go badly, with worldwide tallies of production cutbacks significantly worsening this month.

According to a new estimate by AutoForecast Solutions, which has been tracking the supply chain crisis all year, automakers have now eliminated a total of 8.2 million cars and trucks from their factory schedules because of microchip scarcity — an increase of approximately 888,000 vehicles from AFS’ estimate just one week earlier.

AFS now forecasts that the industry ultimately stands to lose 9.4 million vehicles worldwide because of the chip shortage.

That worst-case scenario is up by nearly 55 percent from AFS’ estimate two months ago.

At the core of the shortage is a growing competition for available manufacturing capacity due to increased demand for chips from makers of consumer electronics, cellphones and computers. But in recent weeks, the supply strain has been exacerbated by work force issues due to the resurgence of COVID-19. Chip production lines in Asia — particularly in Malaysia — have been forced to shut down in response to rising coronavirus infections there.

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