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.