The local auto industry has been almost paralyzed by the ripple effects of the new coronavirus. Although domestic automakers will be able to turn off urgent fire if Chinese auto parts factories resume their production, it is difficult to expect their normal operation for the time being.
According to industry sources on Feb. 9, Hyundai Motor will stop all of its finished car plants in South Korea on Feb. 10 after suspending operation of its plants except its Jeonju plant on Feb. 7. Kia Motors will also close its factories on Feb. 10.
On Feb. 11, however, production will resume at Hyundai Motor's second plant in Ulsan, which produces the Palisade and GV80 and Kia Motors' Hwaseong plant, which makes the K-series. Other factories are also scheduled to open on Feb. 12.
Hyundai and Kia's Chinese plants will resume operation on Feb. 17. Renault Samsung Motors will stop its plant for four days from Feb. 11. The decision takes into account the time lag before resuming production of parts in China and entering South Korea.
Ssangyong Motor will stop production until Feb. 12. GM Korea says it is looking into the inventory situation.
Local companies also took a breather as China decided not to extend the Chinese New Year holidays further. Chinese factories that produce "wireless harnesses" have already started some operations on Feb. 6. The wiring harness is a bundle of wires and signals that acts like a blood vessel to a car.
Due to the high percentage of manual work, most of them are produced in China to cut costs. About 87 percent of the wiring harnesses that Korea imports are from China.