It is looking like Fiat Chrysler might buy the use of a Tesla technology for its brands’ electric cars. During a conversation with stock analysts, FCA boss Mike Manley revealed that his company was considering this option. It would not be the first partnership between the two companies.
While some electrified models in the smaller series are about to make their debut – such as the all-electric Fiat 500 – the larger FCA models do not yet have a battery-electric vehicle on the market. The forthcoming merger with the French PSA group will make the situation even more complicated: Which platform from which subgroup will win the race for which models in the merged company?
Mike Manley, CEO of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, can also imagine using external technology in addition to the FCA and PSA platforms. When asked by an analyst about Tesla’s technology, Manley replied, according to the Business Insider, that one could buy basic BEV platforms and without having to build them, a statement that has fuelled speculation.
Manley only explained: “The customer will be agnostic” about certain components, including, in his opinion, batteries and powertrains. According to Manley, the company could buy a Tesla skateboard platform and adapt other systems, such as the chassis, to the different brands of its own group.
But Manley did not want to officially confirm that he was already in talks with Tesla. Tesla itself has supplied other carmakers in the past, notably Toyota. The only thing that FCA seems to have been concrete about, is that Maserati’s future will increasingly be electric. So far, the brand does not have an electric model on the market, though a fully electric version of the Alfieri coupe is scheduled for 2020.
FCA will soon need its own electric cars in larger numbers in order to meet its CO2 targets. The US American and Italian owned company already buy CO2 certificates from Tesla – which means that the emission-free Tesla cars will be officially awarded to FCA in statistics. According to Manley, the agreement on a common vehicle pool will end in 2021. 2022 will be the first year in which the company will fully benefit from its own efforts, the FCA boss said.
“Our relationship with Tesla goes back a long way,” Manley said. “It really has helped us. But FCA are absolutely committed to reducing CO2 emissions around the world.” The coming months will show whether this will continue with the help of Tesla.
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