It's no secret that two of the biggest barriers limiting EV adoption are range and the availability of charging stations. Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares addressed these obstacles at a CES roundtable this week and clarified that the company has no plans to build a charging network in the US.
"Infrastructure is not part of Stellantis' core business," Tavares said. "It requires a significant investment in resources. We have no plans to build a fast-charging network in the US, but do plan to sell chargers as part of our strategy."
This strategy is different than the one Stellantis applied in Europe. A year ago, the company announced a partnership with TheF Charging, a charging service start-up, to create a new public charging network with over 15,000 sites. However, it is consistent with Stellantis' current US market approach, which includes rolling out Mopar at-home charging units, starting with the Jeep 4xe and Chrysler plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.
The Wi-Fi-capable Level 2 charger supplies up to 32 amps/7.7kW of power, providing a full charge for Chrysler or Jeep PHEVs in just over two hours. It can be hardwired or plugged into an existing power source and is fully weatherproof for outside use. Currently available at most Chrysler and Jeep dealers, it's also available through Mopar's eStore.
Stellantis is also focused on lowering the cost of EVs. Tavares previously expressed his concerns that the car market is getting too expensive and said that EV costs need to come down by 40 percent.
To that end, Stellantis is investing in battery technology. It partnered with Mercedes-Benz to invest in Factorial Energy, a Massachussets-based developer of solid-state batteries. Factorial Energy claims its proprietary solid electrolyte material and Factorial Electrolyte System Technology is safer and provides increased energy density as opposed to conventional lithium-ion batteries. As a result, solid-state batteries have the potential to increase driving range while reducing the cost per kilowatt-hour (kWh).