Wait times at auto repair shops have grown so lengthy, Perfection Auto Refinish owner Jeff McCraw is at times having to return keys to customers before finishing the job.
“I had a customer come pick up his ‘21 model Hyundai Palisade to drive it around with no rear bumper because we’ve had it since February,” McCraw said. “Nobody can even tell us when the bumper is coming.”
A shortage of car parts has put a strain on repair shops across the U.S., resulting in long waits for customers and a backlog of work for Mid-South store owners.
The parts crunch is just one piece of the larger global supply chain crisis, which in 2021 impacted auto manufacturers and other industries.
Following a busy holiday season and months of cargo ships sitting stranded at ports, the global supply chain has struggled to return to pre-pandemic functionality.
While goods are moving quicker than last year, “we are still far from an ideal flow,” said Melzie Wilson, vice president of global operations for Memphis-based logistics company Dunavant Enterprises Inc.
There is a trickle-down effect to the supply chain issue.
No parts means fewer new cars, which, “in addition to raising prices, also push people to keep their cars longer than normal,” she said. And that puts pressure on the auto aftermarket that also has to deal with supply chain challenges.”