Light at the End of the Tunnel

Southern OEMs adjust restart dates, prep for safe production

Mercedes-Benz GLS 580 4MATIC

Trade publications this week started carrying conversations about restarting big factories with a combination of Covid-19 testing, social distancing and general reorganization of workflow and cleaning techniques to make it safe for employees to return to work.

That said, Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama announced Wednesday it would continue to idle automotive production in Montgomery, Alabama through May 1. It hopes to resume production May 4.

HMMA employees will continue to receive full medical, dental and vision benefits during this production interruption. Team members may also use their paid vacation time or leave during this period.

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In the meantime, the company has developed enhanced procedures to sanitize workspaces for its approximately 3,000 team members. It plans to pre-screen for elevated temperatures; ensure physical distancing guidelines throughout the facility; expand cleaning protocols and increase distribution of health and safety materials.

Mercedes-Benz U.S. International has extended its production halt to April 20.

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey issued a stay-at-home order until April 30, 2020. HMMA team members and their families are encouraged to respect the order and follow Centers for Disease Control and Alabama Department of Public Health protocols for reducing the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Chinese factories that closed before the virus spread worldwide have started to reopen as the number of infected people there has declined.

An updated restart list for Southern automakers:



Hyundai May 4

Honda May 4

Toyota April 20

Mercedes-Benz April 20



Kia April 13



Toyota May 4

Fort Truck No date

Ford No date

GM No date



Toyota May 4

Nissan Late April


South Carolina

BMW May 1

Mercedes-Benz Charleston April 20

Volvo May 4



Nissan Smyrna Late April

Nissan Decherd Late April

VW April 12

GM No date



Toyota May 4

GM No date

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