Stellantis eyes Spain for new EV plant

Max McDee, 18 September 2023

The word in the auto world is that Stellantis is gearing up to drop a cool $1 billion in its Spanish facilities located in Vigo and Zaragoza. The goal? To jumpstart the production of electric vehicles, specifically small cars. These electric gems will be constructed on the STLA Small platform, a new introduction to the company’s lineup of electric vehicle platforms.

To add a twist to the tale, Madrid, despite being one of the iconic cities in Spain, will be left out of this electric party. Madrid’s facility, the smallest of Stellantis’s three plants in the country, hasn't made the cut for the STLA Small platform. El País, Spain's major daily, was the one breaking this bit of news, and it’s been sending ripples across the industry.

Electric Opel Corsa is made in Spain Electric Opel Corsa is made in Spain

Now, if we’re talking electric cars, we can't sidestep the topic of batteries. There's chatter that Stellantis might consider setting up its own battery factory right in Spain. After all, if you’re putting all your EV eggs in the Spanish basket, why not have the battery chickens right there? Micky Bly, overseeing Global Propulsion Systems at Stellantis, gave a hint about this when speaking with Reuters. He mentioned plans to boost global battery production capacity, aiming to soar from the present 250 gigawatt hours to a whopping 400 GWh.

The company introduced the STLA platform shortly after its inception in 2021. This platform, especially the STLA Small, is tailored for micro and compact cars, boasting ranges of up to 311 miles. We also have the STLA Medium and Large platforms, catering to bigger passenger cars, with ranges touching 435 miles. And by 2024, we expect to see the STLA Frame meant for those beastly large SUVs and pickup trucks.

Peugeot e-208 - another made in Spain Stellantis vehicle Peugeot e-208 - another made in Spain Stellantis vehicle

Now, if you’re thinking this all sounds fantastic, but where's the official statement from Stellantis? Well, hold onto your horses. Word on the street is that the official announcement is pending, likely to be published in November. Furthermore, in an interesting twist, Stellantis seems to be hoping for a little financial boost from the Spanish state for their EV endeavors. They've supposedly tossed their hat into the ring for a subsidy, specifically a neat $161 million through the Perte support program.

And for those taking notes, Spain isn’t new to Stellantis’s electric dance. The country already houses the production of the Opel Corsa and the Peugeot e-208. But, (and there's always a ‘but’ in the car world), the future of the Peugeot e-208 remains uncertain in Spain. Despite its production shift to Spain recently, the process is yet to start. There was talk of the French Stellantis site being better suited for the production of the e-208 but the Stellantis CEO, Carlos Tavares, however, seems unfazed and turned down that idea last July.

Source (Spanish)

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