A parts shortage has caused Chevrolet to temporarily suspend production of the wildly popular Cruze compact. The car has quickly become a massive success in the compact segment.
Popular compact from Chevy
According to the Wall Street Journal, Chevy managed to sell 215,057 Cruzes from Jan. 1 to Nov. 30, an impressive feat in the segment home to the Toyota Corolla and the Honda Civic.
Not only that, but the Cruze managed to outsell the Civic, which sold only 200,690 units, though supply has been interrupted by natural disasters. It is even outselling the Ford Focus and, according to AutoBlog, the Corolla has a sales lead of only 4,000 units.
Production has been called to a halt for the Chevy Cruze for the time being. A shortage of parts has made production impossible, so Chevy has ordered a work stoppage until sufficient supplies are available to resume making the car.
Chevrolet is not announcing which parts are not available nor the manufacturer, as it wants to preserve competitive information. According to USA Today, the issue concerns a “material … which could compromise customer satisfaction.” There are about 4,500 workers at the Chevrolet plant in Lordstown, Ohio, and a nearby sheet metal plant who are affected by the shutdown. Chevrolet dealers could presumably be affected as well if the problem lingers long enough. Lordstown is the only production facility in the U.S. that produces the Cruze, and General Motors is not likely to begin importing Cruzes from Europe, nor the Opel or Vauxhall Astra, the sister models to the Cruze.
According to AutoGuide, the next generation of the Cruze may be a plug-in hybrid to go along with its larger, eco-friendly cousin the Chevrolet Volt. A Cruze hybrid model would be one of the most fuel-efficient cars on the road. The Eco model of the Cruze, according to BusinessInsider, gets an EPA estimated 42 miles per gallon on the highway if equipped with a manual transmission. The Cruze hybrid, which is slated to debut in 2014, will be a traditional hybrid unlike the Volt, which is technically an electric car equipped with a gas generator, though it is designated a “plug-in hybrid.” The Cruze will have a true hybrid drivetrain with a battery pack, utilizing the hybrid technology from hybrid GMC and Chevy truck models. A 2013 clean diesel Cruze is also slated for production.