Stellantis & Leapmotor joint venture gets approval from Chinese regulator

(Credit: Stellantis)

Stellantis and Leapmotor’s joint venture received approval from China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC). 

With the approval from the NDRC, Stellantis can build and sell Leapmotor electric vehicles (EVs) outside of China, said people familiar with the matter. The joint venture between Stellantis and Leapmotor still needs regulatory approval in other markets. 

In October 2023, Stellantis invested €1.5 billion in Leapmotor. It acquired 20% of the Chinese automakers, making it a significant shareholder. Stellantis has two seats on LeapMotor’s Board of Directors. 

In a statement to Reuters, Leapmotor shared that its first EV model for the overseas market will be launched for sale in Germany, France, Italy, and Spain. Previously, Leapmotor estimated that the first shipments of its EV would hit Europe by the second half of 2024. The Chinese automaker also said that the executive team for its joint venture with Stellantis is in place as C10. 

In February 2024, Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares hinted that Leapmotor’s technology could help the company competitively price electric vehicles to compete with China-made EVs in Europe, North America, and other markets. The automaker’s plans are a little perplexing considering the United States’ recent goal of distancing itself from China. 

Stellantis appears to be strengthening its ties in China’s automotive industry lately. In November, Stellantis repurchased €934 million shares from Chinese automaker Dongfeng based on a pre-existing share repurchase framework. Dongfeng Motors Corporation Ltd. is a state-owned automobile manufacturer based in Wuhan, Hubei. Last year, Stellantis signed a lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) battery cell agreement with China-based CATL

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Maria Merano: Veteran writer and editor, who believes harmony between tech and nature is achievable. We just need to learn to compromise.
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