Quake Damage Halts Auto Assembly Lines

Japanese car makers hit by damage to key suppliers
By Heather McPherson,  Newser User
Posted Jul 19, 2007 9:26 AM CDT
A damaged sidewalk following Monday's quake is seen in Kashiwazaki city, Niigata Prefecture (State), Japan, Tuesday, July 17, 2007. A 6.8-magnitude earthquake shook Japan's northwest coast on Monday,...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Japanese auto makers known for their lean inventories have had to shut down assembly lines for want of parts in the wake of Monday's earthquake. A key supplier of transmission and engine components was damaged in the 6.8-magnitude quake. Toyota, Nissan and Mitsubishi have all halted production at some plants; Honda is threatening to join them, Forbes reports.

The automakers have sent their own engineers—Toyota alone has dispatched 300—to help speed repairs at the supplier, Riken Corp. Lost production is costing the Japanese car makers $164 million a day, Morgan Stanley estimates.