March 24 (UPI) -- General Motors announced Wednesday it's cutting production of midsize pickup trucks to focus on larger vehicles and shutting down some facilities amid a semiconductor chip shortage.
The company said it's shutting down the Wentzville Assembly plant in Missouri from Monday through April 5, and will move up scheduled downtime there by two weeks from May 24 to July 19. The news was announced in a memo to the United Auto Workers viewed by CNBC and the Detroit Free Press.
GM is also extending the current shutdown at the Lansing Grand River Assembly in Michigan. Plants closed in Kansas and Ingersoll, Ontario, will remain shuttered until mid-April, and a facility in Mexico will reopen in early April.
"GM continues to leverage every available semiconductor to build and ship our most popular and in-demand products, including full-size trucks and SUVS for our customers," GM spokesman David Barnes said. "We continue to work closely with our supply base to find solutions for our suppliers' semiconductor requirements and to mitigate impact on GM."
The shutdown in Missouri will impact the production of the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon midsize pickups, which are made there. GM said production of full-size vans at the facility will not be affected because it's not impacted by the chip shortage.
Semiconductors are used for a range of auto electronics, from powertrain control systems to advanced safety systems and in-car entertainment.
Other automakers like Ford, Volkswagen and Toyota have also reduced production in recent weeks due to the shortage.