Fiat Chrysler (FCA) has announced today that it will temporarily suspend production across the majority of its European manufacturing plants due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 emergency.

In a statement the company said the temporary suspension will be in effect through March 27 and  ‘continues the implementation of a comprehensive set of actions in response to the COVID-19 emergency and enables the group to effectively respond to the interruption in market demand by ensuring the optimisation of supply’.

In particular, the suspension of production is being facilitated to ‘enable the group to be ready to commence production promptly once market conditions allow’.

The updated production plan will temporarily close the following facilities with effect for the month

of March:

  • Italy: Melfi, G. Vico (Pomigliano), Cassino, Mirafiori Carrozzerie, Grugliasco, and Modena;
  • Serbia: Kragujevac
  • Poland: Tychy

FCA also said it has been proactively modifying production protocols at several plants including enhancing social distancing between employees at work-stations.

Across all facilities, FCA says it has increased cleaning and sanitisation and other improvements for employee safety. Strict controls and security measures have been applied to canteens and to external access to all group sites. At FCA offices, the company has accelerated the deployment of working remotely (‘Smart Working’) with this option now widely available to employees across the world.

FCA also said  it is ‘working with its supply base and business partners to be ready to enable our manufacturing operations to deliver previously planned total levels of production despite the suspension when market demand returns’.

The COVID-19 coronavirus crisis has deepened in Europe over the past two weeks and particularly in Italy, where the number of cases far exceeds that of other European nations. FCA has also been impacted by supply chain disruption from China and was struggling to keep plants operating last week