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Stellantis CEO predicts healthy competition with Tesla: “I am trying not to be arrogant, just confident”

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Tesla may be leading the electric vehicle market today, but Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares noted that the mega auto conglomerate has what it takes to catch up to the American EV maker in a couple of years. The executive stated that he believes that the competition between Stellantis and Tesla will be a healthy one, and it would be of benefit to consumers. 

Tavares’ comments were shared on Friday during a televised Q&A session with reporters. During the session, the Stellantis CEO highlighted that he is not trying to be arrogant with his statements. He is simply confident of Stellantis’ opportunities in the electric vehicle sector. 

“I am very confident. I am trying not to be arrogant, just confident of the fact that we are going to catch up in the next couple of years with Tesla — and it’s going to be a very healthy competition,” Tavares said. 

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Apart from sharing a comment on Tesla, Tavares also emphasized the importance of having a greater investment in charging networks in Europe and the United States. The CEO noted that creating a certain density of electric vehicle chargers would be particularly useful in persuading vehicle buyers to switch to electric cars. 

On a more serious note, the Stellantis CEO clarified that the auto conglomerate would be moving its Russian van production to Western Europe. Stellantis would also be freezing its plans to invest more in Russia due to the country’s invasion of Ukraine. This is yet another blow to Russia, considering that just last January, Stellantis intended to utilize Russia as an export hub for its vans. 

“New investments in Russia are not on the table,” the Stellantis CEO said

Stellantis may not be early to the electric vehicle game, with the company just recently taking the wraps off its first all-electric Jeep, but CEO Tavares noted previously that its upcoming vehicles would be well worth the wait. In his comments at the company’s Dare Forward 2030 presentation, Tavares noted that Stellantis’ all-electric pickup, the Ram 1500 BEV, will “outperform all competitors on the attributes customers care about.” 

Such statements are quite bold considering that the Ram 1500 BEV will be entering the market in 2024. By that time, competitors such as the Chevy Silverado EV and the Ford F-150 Lightning will already be in the market. Vehicles like the Tesla Cybertruck and the Rivian R1T will likely be ramped as well. Despite this, Tavares noted that Stellantis’ electric Ram will still be the best full-size electric truck

“Our Ram 1500 BEV is coming to the hot pickup market in 2024. According to our internal performance index, our Ram 1500 will outperform all competitors on the attributes customers care about: range, towing, payload, and charging time. It’s built on top of our new STLA Frame architecture, designed specifically for full-size electric vehicles. Make no doubt, we will bring the best electric truck to the full-size segment, and Ram will continue delivering fully electrified solutions in the majority of its segment by 2025 and a full portfolio of electrified solutions for all of its segments no later than 2030,” he said. 

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