Stellantis NV, the automotive giant behind brands like Jeep and Ram, is making strides in the electric vehicle (EV) charging domain by setting up a dedicated business unit named Free2move Charge. This move mirrors Tesla Inc.’s approach by venturing into the sale of energy storage and charging equipment targeted at both plug-in vehicle owners and businesses.
Free2move Charge aims to streamline the EV charging process with a smartphone app that facilitates route planning and consolidates available charging points to ease the search for battery charging options.
This initiative by Stellantis is part of a broader industry effort to expedite EV adoption in the U.S., where the charging infrastructure is often criticized for being fragmented and unreliable.
Stellantis’ venture into this space is driven by the understanding that the current state of public charging infrastructure is a significant barrier to EV adoption, as noted by Ricardo Stamatti, Senior Vice President of Free2move Charge. He highlighted that it is one of the primary reasons consumers hesitate to purchase EVs and a common point of dissatisfaction among current EV owners.
Furthermore, Stellantis is evaluating the North American Charging Standard (NACS) used by Tesla, which suggests a potential alignment with Tesla’s charging technology.
This is in line with other automakers like Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co., which have agreed to adapt their vehicles to Tesla’s charging technology, granting their customers access to Tesla’s extensive and reliable Supercharger network. Tesla’s network boasts about 45,000 Superchargers globally, capable of adding up to 200 miles of range in as little as 15 minutes.
In the backdrop of these developments, Stellantis is also preparing to launch eight new all-electric models in North America next year, including the first all-electric Jeep SUV, the Recon, an electric version of its three-row Wagoneer, and an electric Ram pickup truck. This ambitious rollout underscores Stellantis’ commitment to providing a comprehensive and integrated customer experience in the EV market.