JLR's Nitra plant has been paused due to the chip shortage.
The new Land Rover Defender has been a smash hit, outselling seven years of the old North American version within months of going on sale last year. And that's just the four-door 110 version. The three-door 90 is still on its way. The wait to get a Defender is currently high, and it's about to get higher as Land Rover is pausing production at its Nitra, Slovakia plant due to the chip shortage.
"Like other automotive manufacturers, we're currently experiencing some Covid-19 supply chain disruption, including the global availability of semiconductors, which is having an impact on our production schedules. As a result, we are adjusting production schedules in some of our plants to reflect this," JLR told Autocar.
Jaguar Land Rover is just one of the many automakers pausing production for the same reason. Last week Subaru took a pause on production at its Yajima plant in Japan. Volkswagen cut back production, several American pickups are waiting for chips to arrive and Nissan just said it would see an impact of a half million vehicles.
The Nitra plant has a capacity of 150,000 units per year, more than a fifth of the company's total output. In April, JLR halted its lines at Castle Bromwich and Halewood, where it makes the Discovery Sport, Range Rover Evoque, Jaguar XE, XF and F-Type. There has been no official timeline for the reopening of the Nitra plant.
We drove the Defender last year and found it to be a vehicle that truly takes off roading to another level, in a more premium package than you get with less-expensive competitors from Ford or Jeep. Both the 90 and 110 are offered with either a base 2.0-liter turbocharged I4 making 296 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque; the more powerful 3.0-liter turbocharged six-cylinder engine with a mild-hybrid system manages 395 hp and 406 lb-ft. Both engines are linked to a ZF-sourced eight-speed automatic.
Here's to hoping these shortages will slow down soon.