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No more trucks?


From the pandemic to component shortages: the causes of production slowdown in the transportation sector.

One of the biggest problems of recent times is that there are no more available trucks. Or rather, there is a shortage of semiconductors, technical components, and microchips, which is preventing the demand for industrial vehicles from being met, a demand that is concurrently increasing.

In fact, there are over 200,000 unfulfilled requests that are added to the delays accumulated in 2020 and 2021.
But what are the causes of these delays?
Behind this issue lie a series of factors, which emerged with the onset of the pandemic but persist today. Here are some of them:

  1. The value and weight of microchips have increased.
    Compared to twenty years ago, the components present in a vehicle have multiplied their weight by five, which will further increase in the coming years to operate more and more systems and accessories of the vehicle.
  2. There is no single market for microchip manufacturers.
    When the automotive market came to a halt in the spring of 2020, microchip manufacturers turned to another large sector needing for components, the consumer electronics sector. But now that vehicle production is once again on the rise, the microprocessor pie needs to be divided among more tables.
  3. The pandemic is not over.
    The number of infections and outbreaks have repeatedly halted production, sales, and transportation activities over the course of the two years, resulting in delays in deliveries of all types of vehicles.
  4. Prices have increased.
    To this situation of scarcity, there has also been a continuous rise in the costs of raw materials and energy, which is consequently causing an increase in the cost and hence the price of vehicles.

However, all is not lost. A global ray of hope comes from Taiwan, the only country where production not only continues but has seen a genuine surge in recent times.
There are also companies that are finding solutions and new opportunities. McKinsey, for example, has leveraged this sense of urgency to set up a dedicated team capable of looking beyond normal chip supply chains.
Is this a path to follow? We will wait and see.

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