Stellantis Targets Electric Retrofit LCV Market

Stellantis is entering the retrofit electric powertrain market targeting urban last-mile light commercial vehicles.

The automaker has teamed up with retrofit specialist Qinomic to create a proof of concept to convert ICE powered LCVs while ensuring original car manufacturing quality and specifications, such as safety, durability, and type approval, are maintained. Extending vehicle life and use is mission led by the Stellantis Circular Economy Business Unit in collaboration with the Commercial Vehicle Business Unit and the Stellantis Ventures Studio.

The electric retrofit solution aims to offer an affordable option for business users having to operate in increasingly emission restrictive areas such as while accessing low emissions zones (LEZ) in cities. According to the EIT Urban Mobility Report, the number of LEZ zones in Europe increased by 40% in the last three years and will continue to increase as part of the enforcement of urban vehicle access regulations. The driver for this increase is the European Green Deal plan, aimed at encouraging the transition to cleaner vehicles and cleaner mobility.

Electric powertrain retrofitting is hoped to provide both a sustainable and affordable solution for customers willing to switch to zero emissions and to reduce their total cost of ownership, while keeping their vehicles. Successful completion of this joint development in 2023 and positive customer feedback on the demo cars’ performance will lead to implementation and commercialization starting in France in 2024. Xavier Peugeot, Stellantis senior vice-president at the Commercial Vehicle Business Unit, said: “Retrofitting technology will reinforce Stellantis’ leadership in zero emission mobility solutions for professional customers, complementing our full electrified van range.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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