Honda Motor Co and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles said on Monday they hope to restart U.S and Canadian auto production in May amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Honda halted production on March 23rd and said it will extend the halt through May 1st. FCA said in a statement that it intends to restart its U.S and Canadian manufacturing facilities beginning May 4th.
Honda noted many consumers are unable to purchase vehicles and said it “must continue to suspend production in order to align product supply with a lack of market demand.” Some states and provinces have barred car dealers from selling new cars while “stay at home” orders are in place.
Last week, Nissan Motor Co said it would extend its U.S. production halt into late April. Toyota Motor Corp has halted U.S. and Canadian production through April 17.
Ford said last week it was postponing its plan to restart production at its North America. Ford had been aiming to resume production at several key U.S. plants on April 14, but then said it would now do so at dates to be announced later.
General Motors has closed its plants indefinitely and has not provided a date for vehicle production to restart.
Automakers are working on additional employee protections to add when they restart, including new personal protective gear, staggering shift starts, more frequent cleanings and new social distancing rules.