Following similar announcements made by Lamborghini and Ferrari in recent days, Maserati has decided to halt production at its plant in Modena, Italy amid the coronavirus outbreak. It is part of a greater plan announced by parent company Fiat Chrysler Automobiles to protect its employees across Europe as the facilities in Cassino, Grugliasco, Melfi, G. Vico (Pomigliano), and Mirafiori Carrozzerie are also suspending any activities.
Outside of Italy, FCA is halting production at the factory in Kragujevac in Serbia where it makes the Fiat 500L minivan and is also temporarily shutting down the Tychy plant in Poland where the Fiat 500 and Abarth 500 are produced alongside the Lancia Ypsilon.
In a press release issued today, FCA says the production shutdown will be in effect through March 27. During this interval, the automotive conglomerate will take the following measures:
“The Group will make use of these stoppages to implement revisions to production and quality control protocols to benefit our customers and enhance overall productivity. The Group is working with its supply base and business partners to be ready to enable our manufacturing operations to deliver previously planned total levels of production despite the suspension when market demand returns.”
It’s a perfectly understandable decision taking into account the gravity of the situation in Italy where COVID-19 has affected 24,747 people at the moment of writing, according to the coronavirus resource center set up by The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. After China, Italy has been hit the hardest by the coronavirus outbreak, causing more than 1,800 deaths so far. The silver lining is that nearly 2,400 people in Italy have made a full recovery, but the crisis is far from being over as it’ll likely get worse before it gets better.