Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares has expressed concerns surrounding major upcoming elections in the U.S. and the United Kingdom (UK) next year, warning that the political climates could play a role in the sale of electric vehicles (EVs).
Tavares noted the possibility for a slowed electrification ramp at a press conference outside of Stellantis’s Mirafiori plant in Italy in a statement to Automobilwoche (via Automotive News). He highlighted that a climate of public opinion shifting away from EVs could result in slowed sales, though he didn’t specify what he thought could happen if emissions regulations are reversed in the coming years.
The executive said that Stellantis may need to make adjustments to its strategy “if political and public opinion tends toward fewer EVs.”
“One of my tasks is to prepare the company for new framework conditions. We have plans prepared for this,” Tavares added.
Stellantis is currently still planning to move forward with the Dare Forward 2030 plan, in which the company has committed to reaching 100 percent battery-electric vehicle (BEV) sales in Europe and 50 percent in the U.S. by the start of the new decade.
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The news comes as many companies and onlookers have aired concerns about slowing EV demand, especially as some think consumers will wait more affordable models that are just a few years away from hitting the market. It also comes ahead of expectations that Tesla will earn this year’s top-selling vehicle across Europe.
Earlier this month, Stellantis announced plans to offer voluntary buyouts for 6,400 workers, which the company expected to help cut costs as it attempts to transition to EVs. Stellantis was also targeted by historic United Auto Workers (UAW) strikes in the U.S., alongside Ford and General Motors (GM).
The European Union (EU) earlier this year announced plans to ban the sale of gas vehicles by 2035, following the passage of a similar mandate in California last year. More recently, 2035 targets for gas car sales bans have also been passed in the U.S. state of New Jersey and others.