Counting Cars

UPDATE: Hurricane Sandy Likely to Have Small Impact on Production, Dramatic Impact on Sales


The current projected path of Hurricane Sandy does not look like it will have a big impact on car and truck production short of shutdowns for precautionary measures. The one assembly plant currently in the projected path over the next two days is a Volvo (Mack) truck plant in Pennsylvania.

There are two powertrain plants in Maryland that likely will have work stoppages. One is a low-volume GM transmission plant that supplies heavy-duty Chevrolet Silverado, GMC  Sierra pickups, and hybrid Silverado/Sierra, Tahoe, Yukon and Escalade. The other is a Volvo plant making engines for Volvo and Mack trucks.


The next closest plants to the hurricane are in Virginia and West Virginia, but are positioned in the far west portions of those states and appear relatively safe as long as the hurricane stays on its projected path, which is more toward New York.

If the storm stays severe as it heads inland, there could be some plants in upper New York and Ontario affected later in the week. If it veers from its expected path and heads more westward then there could be several plants affected in the Midwest, especially Ohio.

The bigger loss will be be in sales.  October’s seasonally adjusted annual rate is likely to fall to 14.5 million or lower in the wake of the storm, with massive shutdowns of businesses, power outages and evacuations throught the densely populated coastal region. WardsAuto was forecasting a 15 million light-vehicle SAAR prior to the hurricane.



Discuss this Blog Entry 3

on Oct 30, 2012

Haig, I think one major consideration is not where the plants are located but where is the supplier base located for the factories, this could have a much bigger impact on production. Will people with flooded or damaged vehicles that need now to purchase a new vehicle off set a temporary slow down? Thanks!

on Oct 30, 2012

There likely will be some production slowdown from disruptions in the supplier base, especially of imported parts that use east coast ports. BMW. Volkswagen, and Mercedes might be impacted the most from that. But the domestic supply base for the most part is in the midwest and southern states. The second part is harder to answer. There will be an offset. How much will depend on how many vehicles need to be replaced. Also, working through the damage could mean replacement output spreads into next year.

on Mar 5, 2013

I saw on the news that many, many horses had been rescued by a couple of men equipped with nothing more than a dingy and some rope. I think they mentioned the ones shown resting their heads on the rooftops were among those rescued. Unfortunately most of them have severe wounds caused by sharp gutters and other debris in the flood waters, so they will need a fair while to recover.

Please or Register to post comments.

What's Counting Cars?

Blogs and commentary about automotive data, industry trends, and the future of the auto industry.


John Sousanis

John Sousanis oversees WardsAuto data operations as Director of Information Content, and is Ward’sAuto sales analyst. Follow John on Twitter @CountingCars.  

Haig Stoddard

Haig Stoddard is a veteran automotive industry analyst. His current focus is North America production and longterm sales forecasting.
Blog Archive
Follow Us

Sponsored Introduction Continue on to (or wait seconds) ×