One of the many consequences of Russia's invasion of Ukraine is a shortage of truck drivers in Europe. A significant amount of people employed in this industry come from the war-torn country, and for obvious reasons, many haven't been able to do their jobs since early 2022. That has left automakers with a deficit of people responsible for transporting cars from the factories to dealers across Europe.
To make matters worse, the coronavirus pandemic followed by the semiconductor shortage put the brakes on car production, so the demand for truck drivers declined. With automakers resuming their operations at almost full capacity on the Old Continent, they're having logistical issues by not being able to find enough people to ship the freshly built cars to their rightful owners.
Alfa Romeo Giulia (2023)
Automotive News Europe reports Stellantis has found a workaround – training factory workers to fill in for truck drivers. The company has sent e-mails and placed posters at its European plants to lure in people building cars to deliver them. Approximately 140 employees have signed up for the job. Stellantis operates the following brands on the Old Continent: Abarth, Alfa Romeo, Citroën, DS, Fiat, Jeep, Lancia, Maserati, Opel, Peugeot, and Vauxhall.
Not only is Stellantis paying to train people for their new jobs, but it's also considering buying its own trucks. A spokesperson for the automotive conglomerate says the job switch can be temporary or permanent. Should one decide to return to the factory, they will be allowed to have their job back.
To shorten the time it takes for a finished car to be shipped, Stellantis is even asking dealers to come to the factory and pick up the customer vehicles and have them delivered quickly.
At the same time, Renault has contacted the staffing company Adecco Group to provide assistance to help factory workers get truck driver licenses.