Daimler AG’s sport utility vehicle factory in Alabama is at risk of shutting down because of a shortage of parts coming from Europe, according to a notice sent to workers.
The Mercedes-Benz maker ceased overtime at one part of the Vance, Ala., operations and moved to a six-hour shift at another, said plant CEO Michael Goebel. He wrote employees after Daimler announced Tuesday it would halt most of its output in Europe for at least two weeks due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Part of our supply base gets parts from Daimler operations in Germany and from across Europe,” Goebel wrote in the memo. “It is not clear yet exactly how our supply chain will be impacted, but it is foreseeable it will be difficult to get parts we need in the near future.”
A Daimler spokeswoman confirmed the authenticity of the letter. After referring to the closing of European plants, Goebel wrote: “I will expect similar impact at MBUSI in the upcoming weeks,” referring to Mercedes-Benz U.S. International Inc.
Daimler makes the Mercedes GLE and GLS SUVs at the plant, which employs about 3,800 people. It imports engines and transmissions from Europe.