Just when we were getting all excited about the Indian automobile industry recovering strongly from the aftermath of the pandemic, we are hit by some concerning news. Like us, Mahindra was also ready to plan a slew of launches in the coming months. The most awaited launches of the year from Mahindra included the all-new Scorpio and the next-gen XUV500, along with Bolero Neo (updated TUV300). But there is a little bump in those plans due to a shortage in production and supply of semiconductor chips. We have already mentioned the reasons for the long waiting times on a lot of new vehicles and the shortage of semiconductor chips was one of the reasons. We might, therefore, see a shift in the launch time of these products from Mahindra, although, these might still happen in 2021.
Also read: Mahindra Marazzo will come with diesel AMT!
Shortage of semiconductor chips
During the lockdown, there was a massive demand for electronics globally including laptops, computers, smartphones, tablets and other household appliances. This caused a huge shortage of electronic chips because the production of the semiconductor chips was severely affected by lockdown in various countries. The production facilities across the globe were shut down. This affected the automobile industry in a big way as well. After the lockdown ended, suddenly the demand for automobiles saw an immense jump and we are left with a shortage of supply and manufacture of semiconductor chips.
In an automobile, especially a modern one, almost every aspect/feature is influenced by electronics. Starting from safety aspects like ABS, EBD, Airbags, Automatic Braking, Parking Sensors and Camera, to convenience features like Automatic Climate Control, Digital Infotainment System, Digital Instrument Cluster, Powered Tailgates and much, are all a result of communication between various electronic components in a vehicle. Practically, not even a single car can be manufacture without an ECU unit, which requires semiconductor chips. This has wreaked havoc on the automobile industry and therefore, we are seeing long waiting times and delay in the launch of a few new products.
Mahindra Scorpio and XUV500
Mahindra has stated that it assumes that the problem of the semiconductors will be solved by the second quarter of 2021, which means that the new cars slated to launch by mid-2021 might see a bit of a delay. This includes the much-anticipated Mahindra XUV500 which is touted to come with a lengthy feature-list including Level 2 of Autonomous Driving Assistance Systems (ADAS), a dual-touchscreen setup like the Mercedes, a Panoramic Sunroof and much more. The engine options are likely to be the 2.2-litre diesel engine making 180hp and the 2.0-litre direct-injection turbo petrol from the mStallion family making 190hp. It might also come with 4×4 drive systems.
The next-gen Scorpio is also slated to launch by mid-2021. Being the only ladder-on-frame body type 7-seat SUV in the segment, it will be an exciting option for people who have loved the Scorpio over the years. It will also come with a ton of features and powerful engines. It will retain the tall-boy stance but will be new inside out. Mahindra will also bring in the Bolero Neo as an update to the outgoing TUV300 which will be placed above the regular Bolero in the Mahindra’s fleet. All these products were to be launched by mid-2021 itself, but now there might be a slight delay of not more than a quarter, we would hope.