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April 2, 2019

UK car plants close (temporarily) despite Brexit delay

Brexit may have been delayed but well-laid plans to temporarily close some UK car plants based on the original 29 March EU-exit date went ahead regardless.

By Olly Wehring

Brexit may have been delayed but well-laid plans to temporarily close some UK car plants based on the original 29 March EU-exit date went ahead regardless.

According to a Reuters report, BMW’s Mini plant in Oxford is closed for four weeks while Peugeot’s Vauxhall car factory at Ellesmere Port is down for two weeks.

The moves were planned months ago.

BMW moved its annual summertime shutdown to April to “minimise the risk of any possible short-term parts-supply disruption in the event of a no-deal Brexit” while PSA brought forward its shutdown in a decision made at the end of last year, a spokesman told Reuters.

Employee holidays had to be rescheduled and suppliers needed to adjust volumes which makes such shutdowns difficult to move at short notice.

“This is what our company and our workforce have planned for over many months and it is fixed into our business planning,” a BMW spokesman told Reuters.

BMW is also closing the Rolls-Royce factory in Goodwood for two weeks and Tata Motors’ Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is shuttering three car plants (Castle Bromwich, Solihull and Halewood) plus its engine facility in Wolverhampton. Honda’s Swindon factory will also shut for a few days this month, the report said.

BMW eyeing Honda’s English plant

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