Stellantis teams up with Ample to launch battery swapping - Fiat 500e will go first
Stellantis, the automotive juggernaut behind Fiat, Dodge, Jeep, and Opel, has joined forces with California-based startup Ample to introduce a fleet of electric vehicles that can swap their high-voltage batteries in just five minutes. This approach promises to reshape the landscape of electric mobility and address some of the lingering concerns associated with EV adoption. So far only Nio has been using battery swaps in its EVs.
Ample's battery swap stations offer a quick and efficient fix for the range anxiety. These stations are capable of replacing a depleted battery pack in the blink of an eye, making EV ownership more convenient and accessible than ever before. This groundbreaking development is set to begin in Madrid, Spain, in 2024, marking the initial phase of the collaboration.
The plan is to retrofit 100 Fiat 500e EVs, which are part of Stellantis' Free2move car-sharing service, with Ample's modular batteries. These batteries can be swapped on a module-by-module basis at Ample's dedicated swap stations. Both companies have expressed their intentions to expand the technology to more Stellantis vehicles in the future.
"The partnership with Ample is another example of how Stellantis is exploring all avenues that enable freedom of mobility for our electric vehicle customers," emphasized Ricardo Stamatti, Stellantis Senior Vice President, Charging & Energy Business Unit. "In addition to other projects we are focused on, Ample's Modular Battery Swapping solution has the opportunity to offer our customers greater energy efficiency, outstanding performance, and lower range anxiety. We are looking forward to executing the initial program with our stellar Fiat 500e," Stamatti added.Easy to install and expand - Ample battery swap station
One of the most exciting aspects of Ample's modular batteries is their adaptability. They can be swapped with different capacities based on the driver's specific needs. For instance, a customer might only require a 20 kWh battery for a day of city driving, but they can opt for a larger capacity when planning longer weekend trips.
Khaled Hassounah, CEO of Ample, expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership, stating, "At Ample, we believe in the importance of making electric vehicles accessible to everyone without compromises, which is the only way that we will make a significant impact on lowering greenhouse gas emissions. Stellantis' ambitious electrification goals, its range of electric vehicles, and the commitment of its leadership make Stellantis a perfect partner in achieving our goals."Mitsubishi is working with Ample already
Ample's battery swap technology made its debut in 2021 with the first-generation stations in California. These stations were capable of exchanging all the retrofitted battery modules with a freshly charged batch in approximately ten minutes. Earlier this year it brought its second-generation stations that cut the waiting time in half and introduce conveniences, such as allowing drivers and passengers to exit the vehicle during the swap process.
With Stellantis and Ample jumping on the battery swap technology, Nio joining forces with Geely, and even Changan jumping on the bandwagon, the future of electric mobility looks even more interesting. As the industry continues to evolve, it is partnerships like these that will pave the way for a more convenient electric future on the road.
If you have time to leave the car during a swap, there's certainly room for improvement.
- 11 Dec 2023