Chip shortage slows Japan's auto output rebound

Major Japanese automakers have reported a surge in their global output of vehicles in April from a year earlier. But the recovery for some was slowed by an ongoing shortage of semiconductors.

Each of the eight carmakers saw production rise from April 2020, when the coronavirus pandemic forced closures at auto factories around the world.

Toyota says its overseas production was about 490,000 units, the highest for the month of April.

China was a bright spot for Honda. Its output there was about 170,000, a record number for the month.

Overall, the figures point to a pickup in demand in the key markets of the United States and China.
Nissan was among the companies affected by the global shortage of chips used in car parts. It saw its output in China decline year-on-year for the first time in seven months.

Subaru's global production was significantly lower compared with April 2019, before the pandemic.

Analysts warn the outlook is uncertain as many auto plants have been halted in India amid a surge in coronavirus infections.