A dispute between Volkswagen and two of its parts suppliers has ground the carmaker's production of flagship brands to a halt, affecting the working hours of almost 28,000 employees, according to a statement released Monday.
Around 27,700 workers at assembly plants across Germany face cuts to their hours in the coming week, the company said.
"Due to a halt in deliveries caused by external distributors, the capacity for production with component parts for several Volkswagen factories is interrupted," VW said in the statement.
"In our view, the responsibility clearly lies with the supplier," Bernd Osterloh, supervisory board member and head of the company's works council, said in an interview with the Bild daily.
The dispute between VW and two of its production partners – gearbox specialist ES Automobilguss and seat covers manufacturer Car Trim – has already forced the carmaker to halt production of its Golf and Passat models.
The suppliers accused VW of forcing the halt in deliveries, arguing that the carmaker cancelled contracts without reason or notice and refused to compensate its partners accordingly.
Representatives of the rowing parties were meeting on Monday in Wolfsburg, the northern German city where VW is headquartered, in a bid to resolve the dispute.
The row has added to the pressure on VW as it battles to emerge from an emissions-testing scandal that engulfed the group after it admitted in September to installing software aimed at cheating environmental tests on 11 million diesel vehicles around the world.