the boss of Stellantis very critical of the State

While the energy transition is on everyone's lips, the Stellantis automobile group, led by Carlos Tavares, has clear ambitions: to sell 100% electric vehicles in Europe by 2030 and to achieve carbon neutrality in 2038. This ambition clashes However, there are regulatory and political obstacles, as Carlos Tavares highlighted during his hearing in the Senate on March 18.

Indeed, the social leasing system, launched in December and intended to facilitate access for disadvantaged households to electric mobility for a low rent of 100 euros per month, was interrupted for 2024, after less than two months of opening . A victim of its success, this system was initially supposed to rent 20,000 vehicles and ended up honoring 50,000 orders. A situation which, according to Carlos Tavares, could compromise the group's energy transition objectives, despite the French State's commitment to reopen the system at the end of 2024.

“Sell a large number of our vehicles to the middle classes”

Hearing by the Senate, Carlos Tavares shared his vision of a successful transition to low-carbon mobility, which is based on three pillars: access to competitive carbon-free electricity, a network of charging stations perceived as dense by motorists and the possibility of selling electric vehicles at an affordable price.

“We must be able to sell a large number of our vehicles to the middle classes, so as not to build elitist mobility which does not solve the problem of climate change”, he defended. And to highlight the need for continued support from the State to facilitate this transition. The decision to suspend social leasing was greeted with disappointment by the director of Stellantis, 75% of the device's market share goes to group brand vehicles.

Carlos Tavares also underlined the importance of maintaining support for initiatives promoting accessibility to electric mobility, especially in the face of international competition, notably Chinese manufacturers.

“We hope that it will be reactivated… we must not shut down the reactors on takeoff”he lamented, alluding to the need for unwavering support from European states in this critical period of transition.

Political concerns

Beyond the immediate challenges, Carlos Tavares expressed his concerns about potential future political fluctuations, especially with the American and European elections. He called for consistency on the part of public authorities to ensure a stabilized environment, allowing the development of adequate technologies over a decade. This need for stability is endangered by changes in political direction, likely to slow down or modify the direction of the energy transition.

Carlos Tavares' comments reflect a broader tension in the automotive sector, between the imperatives of ecological transition and fluctuating political and economic realities. The “dogmatic” approach of certain political actors, pushing for an accelerated transition without taking into account social impacts, is particularly criticized.

In this context, the declarations of political figures like Donald Trump, promising to reverse aid for the purchase of electric vehicles, only add to the uncertainty weighing on the automobile industry.

  • Carlos Tavares, director of the Stellantis automobile group, criticizes the interruption of the social leasing system for electric vehicles in France
  • He insists on access to competitive carbon-free electricity, a dense network of charging stations, and the sale of electric vehicles at affordable prices, particularly for the middle classes.
  • Faced with political uncertainty and the upcoming elections in Europe and the United States, he also calls for consistency in government support

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