Stellantis revs up India’s EV export hub status with shipments to Indonesia

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Stellantis has initiated its plan to position India as a hub for EV exports, starting with the shipment of 500 units of its ‘Citroen eC3’ electric car

Stellantis aims to leverage India’s cost competitiveness in manufacturing to expand its overseas shipments, particularly targeting Southeast Asian markets.

Stellantis, the global automotive giant formed by the merger of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and PSA Group, is setting its sights on India as a hub for electric vehicle (EV) exports, particularly targeting Southeast Asian markets. The company’s India arm, Stellantis India, has kickstarted its export operations with the shipment of 500 units of its Made in India ‘Citroen eC3′ electric car to Indonesia. This move is part of Stellantis’ strategy to capitalise on India’s cost competitiveness in manufacturing and increase its overseas shipments.

Aditya Jairaj, CEO and MD, Stellantis India, claimed that the company will be the first ‘multinational OEM’ in the country to export EVs. “We also have plans for a couple of other markets, Nepal and Bhutan. This is just the start…the plan is to take it from there,” he added.

Highlighting the significance of commencing exports of the eC3, he emphasised Stellantis’ dedication to the ‘Make in India’ initiative. He stated that this aligns with Citroen’s goal of democratising electric mobility and promoting sustainable transportation. Stellantis currently sells its Jeep and Citroen brands in India.

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With ‘Make in India’ central to Stellantis’ strategy, Jairaj emphasised the importance of competitiveness in the Indian automotive space. He expressed the company’s intention to leverage India as a ‘best cost country’ for global markets. When asked about expanding EV exports, Jairaj mentioned that they are evaluating markets where EV acceptance is high, especially in Southeast Asia.

Stellantis is exploring exporting the E-C3 to other Southeast Asian markets, considering the significant EV penetration and customer demand in the region. While looking at West and East India for EV exports, specific locations are yet to be announced. India’s ability to export to various markets is a key factor in Stellantis’ export strategy.

At this point, Jairaj said, “We are at advanced stages of evaluating exporting the E-C3 to other Southeast Asian markets. If we see today, in Southeast Asia the EV penetration is quite significant in several markets and there is the customer demand.”

He cited examples of Stellantis’ successful exports, such as the C3 to Africa and the C3 Aircross to Malaysia and Indonesia. Jeep, another brand under Stellantis, is exported from India to Japan and is being considered for export to other Southeast Asian markets and Africa. Jairaj emphasised the quality and cost competitiveness of Indian products, highlighting the company’s flexibility and dynamism in adapting to market changes.

He further said the idea is to continue to focus on this as “the quality of product from India is comparable to the best in the world and from a cost perspective we are very competitive”.

Also in a changing world, he said, “We are very flexible and dynamic and our reaction time to making changes has come down. We are leveraging all of these and exports are a very significant tool, I would say at this point for Stellantis in India.”

First Published Date: 11 Apr 2024, 17:58 PM IST

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