The future looks … electric?
Yet another well-known automaker has announced the decision to focus on electric and hybrid engines for the future of their vehicle fleets. Most recently, Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Fiat Chrsyler announced during an investor earnings that beginning in 2019 all cars made under the Maserati brand would be electric-based.
This is similar to the announcement the market received earlier this month from Swedish automaker Volvo. The company announced their intention to only offer hybrid and electric vehicles beginning in 2019 with plans to release five new all-electric models by 2025.
Electrification is an “an integral part of the development of the [Fiat Chrysler] group. We [FCA] have been reluctant to embrace that avenue until we saw clearer the path forward.” – Sergio Marchionne, CEO Chrysler Fiat
The company has been slower to adjust to market interest in electric-based engine technology compared to other car makers because of issues with demand and development costs with Marchionne telling customers in 2014 to avoid purchasing the Fiat 500e because the company lost money on every sale (estimated to be about £8,300 per vehicle).
Marchionne told those listening to the call that Fiat Chrysler would launch their electrification plan with intent to complete their transition by 2022 at which time their expectation is that more than half of their vehicles in the FCA fleet will be electrified with the Maserati brand helping to champion the move.
This announcement comes just weeks after the British clean air strategy release which calls for the sale of new gas and diesel cars and vans to end by 2040. Other European countries have also committed to an electric future. Norway, for example, is hoping to only sell electric vehicles in their country by 2025 and is heavily incentivizing electric car buyers with waived taxes, free toll roads and free charging stations in parking lots.