‘Let the automotive industry’ do its job

The CEO of the maker of Jeeps SUVs and Ram pickup trucks said Wednesday automakers are in the highest of high-speed modes in their shift toward electrification and regulators should focus their efforts on the energy industry and building out charging infrastructure.

Accelerated electrification goals could lead to job losses, Stellantis NV CEO Carlos Tavares said. Electric vehicles represent a 50% increase in cost that would outprice products for the middle class or lead to restructuring of companies that take on those costs, he said.

“My recommendation to those who are making regulations and advocating XYZ is to take care of the energy industry, and now let the automotive industry take care of its own job, which is to bring clean, affordable and safe mobility to our customers,” Tavares said during a virtual Reuters Next conference.

To achieve that goal, Stellantis must digest 10% of productivity per year over the next five years in an industry used to delivering 2% to 3% productivity, he said. Stellantis has committed to investing roughly $35 billion (30 billion euro) into electrification by 2025 of its almost $80 billion (70 billion euro) research and development and capital expenditures budget.

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