Stellantis invests in Turin in push to boost low emission vehicle production

By Giulio Piovaccari

TURIN, Italy (Reuters) -Stellantis has chosen Italy’s historic carmaking city of Turin for an investment to boost its role in low emission vehicle production and as a centre for the recycling of cars and their parts.

The Franco-Italian group signed an agreement with its Belgian partner Punch Powertrain to increase production of electrified dual-clutch transmissions (eDCT) for hybrid and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles at its Mirafiori plant in Turin, the carmaker said on Tuesday.

Producing and selling more electric and hybrid vehicles is a key plank in plans set out in March by Stellantis Chief Executive Carlos Tavares to double revenue to 300 billion euros ($300 billion) a year by 2030.

Tavares on Tuesday said the group was investing a “double-digit” million euro figure in the gearbox upgrade, without giving a precise figure.

The Mirafiori complex will also become the company’s main hub for its so called ‘circular economy’ business, focusing on reconditioning and dismantling of vehicles and reusing components, with Tavares seeing a prolonged shortage of raw materials.

Union officials said the recycling operation could create work for 550 people by 2025.

“Scarcity of raw materials will continue in the next decade and we think we can extend the life of materials we use, this is going to be very important for our company,” Tavares said in a news conference in Turin.

The group aims to boost recycling revenues ten-fold to 2 billion euros by 2030.

Turin’s Mirafiori is the historic home of Fiat, which merged with France’s PSA last year to form Stellantis.

It is one of the group’s main production sites in Italy along with Melfi in the south and Atessa’s Sevel for light commercial vehicles in central Italy. Including white collar staff, Mirafiori now employs some 20,000 workers.

Production at Mirafiori, which also hosts the Stellantis battery hub for Italy, includes the fully-electric 500 small car, one of the group’s bestsellers in Europe.

Tavares said production of the model can “easily” double from 45,000 units in 2021, and then triple, as constraints were not tied to capacity or battery pack availability but rather because of other parts affected by the semiconductor supply crunch.

The new Mirafiori e-Transmissions Assembly facility is expected to start production in the second half of 2024. It will complement the existing capacity of a plant in the French city of Metz, supplying all relevant Stellantis manufacturing sites in Europe, with a total annual production of 1.2 million units on the two sites, Tavares said. ($1 = 0.9996 euros)

(Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari, writing by Cristina Carlevaro and Keith Weir; Editing by Agnieszka Flak and Paul Simao)

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