German carmakers sound alarm over lack of mature-node chip manufacturing

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Global car production might drop by as much as 20 percent by 2026 due to a lack of semiconductors, a study commissioned by the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) concludes. Semiconductor demand from the automotive sector is expected to triple by 2030, but chipmakers aren’t expanding their manufacturing capacity enough for the mature nodes that make up the bulk of that demand. The exception is China, which is investing heavily in older process technology, but in this age of decoupling, that’s no comfort.

The VDA urges policymakers to promote setting up additional production capacity in automotive-relevant node sizes in Europe. “The EU Chips Act must now be followed by action. Europe must invest in the production of automotive-related chips and ramp up the production of chips. This is the only way to minimize the dependence on Asia for semiconductors and strengthen the resilience of the German and European automotive industry,” comments VDA president Hildegard Müller.