Jeep is ready for an electric safari.
After opting for a strategy of small steps towards the electrification of its models, the flagship brand of Stellantis (STLA) – Get the Stellantis NV reportcompany born from the marriage between the American-Italian car manufacturers Fiat Chrysler and the French Peugeot, now wants to accelerate.
Needless to say, time is running out and investors are rewarding automakers with a clear vision of their electric future.
And so far, Jeep was not one of them. Its main competitors have taken a significant lead.
Ford (F) – Get Ford Motor Company report reinvented its legendary Mustang and launched an electric SUV, Mach-E, which is in high demand, according to the Dearborn, Michigan automaker. Additionally, the electric version of the best-selling F-150 pickup, the F-150 Lightning is about to start production.
As for General Motors (GM) – Get General Motors company reportthe company is set to launch production of the highly anticipated Lyriq electric SUV, the first electric vehicle from its premium Cadillac brand.
GMC, GM’s other brand, already sells the massive Hummer electric SUV.
Plus, the Chevy Silverado electric pickup is on the way.
And as if that weren’t enough, Tesla (TSLA) – Get the Tesla Inc report already offers the Model Y SUV, while newcomer Rivian (BANK) – Get the Class A report from Rivian Automotive, Inc. is already gaining market share with its R1T all-terrain, all-weather truck.
Faced with this state of affairs, it seems urgent for Jeep to react. The brand does not currently offer any all-electric vehicles, but markets a Jeep Wrangler 4xe Plug-in-Hybrid, and soon the Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe.
Ambition or panic?
But things are about to change, Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares said Tuesday during the presentation of the company’s 2030 strategy. launch a single electric vehicle by 2024 as the company had hinted. .
But the brand will offer two, a real challenge because the development of an electric vehicle is expensive and requires a whole new manufacturing architecture very different from a thermal car.
Tavares said Jeep will sell its first full-battery electric vehicle in early 2023.
He unveiled photos of this vehicle, to which he did not give a name, simply stating that it was a “family lifestyle” vehicle.
The CEO did not give any technical details about this vehicle, nor about the market segment Jeep is targeting in terms of price. But the two vehicle images, one front and one rear, show a yellow colored SUV/Crossover, which was similar in size to the current Jeep Compass. But the rear looks like a Cherokee or a Renegade.
Tavares did not specify if this vehicle would be marketed in all its markets, in particular in the United States.
“We are setting a course for 100% of sales in Europe and 50% of sales in the United States to be battery electric vehicles by the end of this decade,” Tavares said. “We expect to have over 75 BEVs and achieve annual global BEV sales of five million vehicles by 2030.
“Today, we are excited to introduce the first-ever Jeep-branded all-electric SUV launched in early 2023,” Tavares added.
Tavares didn’t stop there as he announced that Jeep would also be marketing an off-road SUV from early 2024. He didn’t give further details, but speculation points to an electric version of the Jeep Wrangler.
To be competitive
Asked if launching two electric vehicles in less than two years wasn’t a little too ambitious and if it wasn’t more or less an acknowledgment that the company was behind the times, Tavares said no. .
“I’m a competitive CEO,” he replied. “It’s about being competitive.
“We are in the race and I hope I can convince you today that we are in a very good position to lead this race, that is what we are working on every day”, he insisted. “Europe and the United States want electrification, so we’re going to compete with each other, and we’re going to be in the race for electrification.”
Stellantis has promised, however, that there will be an electric variant of all Jeep-branded SUVs by 2025.
The firm presented an all-electric Jeep Wrangler concept at the 2021 edition of Easter Jeep Safari.
From what we’ve seen, the Wrangler Magneto is an electric concept vehicle designed to show off what you might expect from a future electric Wrangler.
It’s based on the 2020 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon and seems to hang on to many of the Wrangler’s off-road skills, delivering power to match the 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine, while retaining the 30-inch wading depth and with a skid plate and skid plate to protect electrical components and batteries.
There are four batteries, spread out to keep the weight balanced, with a total capacity of 70kWh. It runs on an 800-volt system, with a custom motor that will deliver 273 lb-ft of torque and an equivalent output of 285 hp.
The Jeep Wrangler Magneto can accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in about 8.1 seconds, but Stellantis says nothing about range. But it’s important to note that most cars with this type of battery capacity go around 250 miles.
In addition to Jeep, Tavares reconfirmed that a Ram 1500 electric pickup will go on sale in 2024. The company will continue to expand its electric offering with a heavy-duty model equipped with a hydrogen fuel cell powertrain that will offer a combination of long range with fast refueling. aptitude.