Italian car buyers haven’t warmed to EVs with the same enthusiasm of other European countries, but the government looking to change that. Beyond investing with incentives and other efforts, the Italian government could take a stake in Stellantis, owner of Alfa Romeo, Maserati, and Fiat. The automaker and government have been at odds for a while, as Setllantis has moved away from Italian auto production in favor of less expensive markets.
Despite Italy’s ties to a handful of Stellantis brands, it does not hold a stake in the company and does not have board representation. France does, and Stellantis also owns Peugeot, Citroen, and others. The French hold a six percent stake in the automaker, which hasn’t sat well with the Italians.
Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares believes the automaker hasn’t gotten much support from the Italian government, saying that the company is “losing manufacturing products in Italy that we could manufacture. We already wasted nine months of production in Mirafiori.” That location builds the Fiat 500e and has had temporary layoffs to cope with wavering EV demand.
The automaker’s electrification efforts are just getting started in North America. The plug-in hybrid Alfa Romeo Tonale and Dodge Hornet are on sale, and the electric Jeep Wagoneer S will land later this year. On the flip side, Maserati has delayed the Quattroporte EV, and consumer demand here is just as flimsy as in Italy, if not more so. Those challenges could present big speedbumps to the company’s goals, here and abroad.
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