Ford, Toyota, and Honda are taking steps to restart factories after the automakers stopped production in North America in mid-March amid COVID-19 restrictions.
Ford is planning to resume operations as early as April 6 by restarting some key North American plants, while taking precautionary measures to ensure safety to returning workers, the automaker announced in a press release.
Ford plans to re-commence operations with one shift at its plant in Hermosillo, Mexico, on April 6, then aims to restart its Dearborn truck plant, Kentucky truck plant, Kansas City assembly plant’s transit line, and the Ohio assembly plant by April 14. In support of the assembly plants, parts of the Van Dyke, Lima and Rawsonville plants in Michigan and Ohio could also reopen by April 14.
Toyota announced on Thursday, it will try to resume production by April 20 at all its North American auto parts and vehicle factories, including facilities in Mexico, extending two weeks past the prior target date of April 6. Toyota’s decisions were based on continuing issues related to the pandemic and substantial weakening in vehicle demand.
Honda aims to restart its engine, parts and vehicle plants in the US and Canada on April 7, extending past the original projection of March 31. In a statement on Thursday, the carmaker cited COVID-19 risk and a steep drop in demand as some of the factors for the delay.
General Motors and Fiat Chrysler said they have not yet decided on a date for operations to restart at its plants, per media sources. Automakers are monitoring the virus and will adjust decisions if needed. They are also prepared for a substantial drop in demand as production aims to restart.