The tight supply of automotive chips, which had eased in recent months, seems to have returned.
A semiconductor supplier's Muar plant in Malaysia has been asked by the local government to shut down part of its production line until Aug. 21 due to the aggravation of the Covid-19 outbreak, said David Xu, executive vice president of Bosch (China) Investment Co, in his WeChat status on Tuesday.
This will cause Bosch ESP/IPB, VCU, TCU and other chips to be directly affected, and is expected to be largely in a state of supply disruption in August thereafter, Xu said.
From the information released by Xu, the "semiconductor chip supplier" should belong to a large automotive chip manufacturer, while the automotive chipmaker has its own chip factory in Muar.
Icsmart.cn speculates that the "semiconductor chip supplier" is most likely Renesas.
Malaysia is the location of many semiconductor manufacturers packaging business, NXP, Renesas, Infineon, ST, Texas Instruments, ONSEMI have local packaging plant, according to Icsmart.cn.
Renesas' packaging base is mainly in Malaysia, with as many as four plants. Among them, Selangor Darul Ehsan's plant is the largest, covering 150,000 square meters, with 2,263 employees, mainly for MCU and power semiconductor products.
The Malaysian government has imposed a nationwide lockdown since May of this year to control the new crown outbreak and has announced since late June that the nationwide lockdown, which was scheduled to end on June 28, has been extended indefinitely.
The information released by Xu mentioned that more than 100 of the factory's 3,000 employees were infected and more than 20 died from Covid-19.
After Xu shared the above information, XPeng Motors chairman and CEO He Xiaopeng also shared the information in his WeChat status and expressed his helplessness about the potential chip shortage.
Notably, last week NIO founder, Chairman and CEO William Li said during NIO's Q2 conference call last Thursday that capacity in Q2 was impacted by chip supply volatility, adding that Covid-19 and extreme weather since July have posed ongoing challenges to the global supply chain.
Covid-19 caused some chip factories in Malaysia to shut down production, and flooding in Germany affected production of some components, both of which had a manageable impact, Li said.