The Biden Administration is beginning to see some signs of the semiconductor chip shortage easing up for automakers, U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo told reporters this week.
Raimondo was quoted by Bloomberg as saying the Biden Administration is “starting to see some improvements,” with regard to semiconductor chip supply and that the Detroit Big Three have told her they are now getting “little bit more of what they need,” with regard to the chips.
In recent weeks, Raimondo has turned her attention toward the proposed $52 billion in funding to boost domestic chip production and research. The bill was passed by the Senate in June, but is still awaiting House approval. She told Bloomberg this week that the high-stakes bill needs to pass before the House recesses next month.
“What I say is we need to get this done this summer,” Raimondo said. “They can’t recess this August without having gotten this done.”
The Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, the world’s largest chip manufacturer, has said it will ramp up production of semiconductor chips by 60 percent before year’s end, which is expected to partially remedy some of the supply issues certain automakers are experiencing. TSMC also recently announced plans to build new plants in Japan and the United States.
In the meantime, GM continues to prioritize its chip supply for its full-size truck and SUV models, which are the most profitable vehicles in its portfolio. As a result, full-size trucks account for just one percent of the vehicle production that GM has lost out on due to the chip shortage.
The automaker has also begun shipping some vehicles without certain features in order to cut back on how many chips it uses. Some models will no longer be offered with wireless charging pads and HD Radio, while some trucks have been shipped without Active Fuel Management and Dynamic Fuel Management technologies installed.