Stellantis’ comprehensive umbrella of manufacturers, ranging from Peugeot, Opel, and Fiat, to Dodge, Ram, and Jeep, represent some of the most active legacy marques on the market in terms of electrification. The group’s chief executive is seemingly happy to confirm, however, that this isn’t necessarily by choice.
Speaking during a European press conference, Stellantis boss Carlos Tavares expressed cynicism in plug-in vehicles — stating that the change in direction is one motivated mostly by politics.
Tavares spoke about how far an electric vehicle needs to travel in order to make up the difference in its environmental footprint during production relative to a typical internal combustion engine vehicle, while also showing concern for the changes European manufacturers will need to make to supply chains and production methods in order to completely phase out ICE by 2035.
“What is clear is that electrification is a technology chosen by politicians, not by industry,” he said.
“Given the current European energy mix, an electric car needs to drive 70,000 kilometres to compensate for the carbon footprint of manufacturing the battery and to start catching up with a light hybrid vehicle, which costs half as much as an EV.”
Tavares’ comments are somewhat at odds with what some of his brands have announced, although some of these announcements have undoubtedly been sped up by the European Union’s announcement of a ban on the sale of new internal combustion engine vehicles by 2035.
Peugeot has announced it will be fully electric by 2030, with Opel announcing it will do the same two years earlier, and Alfa Romeo ditching internal combustion one year earlier still in 2027. While Dodge and Ram haven’t outlined an ICE end date, they have unveiled some significant electric projects — including Dodge claiming it will build the first fully electric muscle car.
Much of this is made possible via Stellantis’ significant €30billion investment in the development of four new shared electric vehicle platforms, which will eventually be utilised across 14 of its brands.