Stellantis presented Fiat Grande Panda which they will produce in Serbia

Stellantis has unveiled the design of the Fiat Grande Panda model, which is set to be produced in Kragujevac. The new electric vehicle will be presented to the public on July 11, Fiat’s anniversary, according to bloombergadria.com.

The car, designed in Turin, draws inspiration from the 1980s Panda and is based on a multi-energy platform, which means it will have both electric and hybrid variants. Stellantis announced that the Grande Panda is the first in a series of new models to be launched annually until 2027. These vehicles will be built on a multi-energy smart car platform.

Olivier Francois, CEO of Fiat, described it as the best way to celebrate the Italian company’s 125th anniversary.

“The Fiat Grande Panda is designed in Turin and based on a global platform, providing the brand with the opportunity for global expansion,” said Francois.

The Grande Panda will initially be available in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, offered in both electric and hybrid models.

The electric version is expected to deliver 113 HP, feature a 44 kWh battery with a range of up to 320 km, while the hybrid variant will combine a 1.2-liter three-cylinder gasoline engine with an electric motor.

The new model is approximately four meters long and can accommodate up to five passengers. Although the statement does not explicitly confirm production in Kragujevac, it was announced during the visit of Italy’s Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni to Belgrade last year that the electric Panda would be manufactured in Serbia. Italy has also recently announced two other models.

Workers at the factory, which previously produced the Fiat 500 L until two years ago, are actively preparing for the serial production of the new model. The official unveiling is scheduled for the company’s anniversary, with production set to commence in the final quarter of this year.

FCA, the manufacturer, is investing 162 million euros in the production of the new model. Stellantis holds a majority stake of approximately 66%, with the Serbian government as a minority partner. The state is subsidizing production with 48 million euros, with the first tranche of 15.5 million euros disbursed in December last year.

Bloomberg Adrija has already reported that the Fiat Grande Panda is expected to cost between 20,000 and 21,000 euros. Taking into account the state’s subsidies of 5,000 euros for purchasing electric vehicles, the cost would be around 15,000 euros. Previously, the Fiat 500 L, which was produced in Kragujevac until recently, cost between 10,000 and 15,000 euros.

The Citroen e-C3, on whose platform the car in Kragujevac will be based, costs 23,300 euros. However, Citroen has announced a cheaper 2-C3 version for 2025, with a range of up to 200 kilometers, priced at 19,900 euros.

Kragujevac’s car benefits from tariffs on Chinese vehicles.

Stellantis’s price could be attractive in Europe, especially since the EU announced tariffs on electric vehicles from China starting July 01, up to 38.1 percent, which European officials believe threatened the electric vehicle industry in the EU.

Although Bloomberg reports that Chinese brands had a market share of about seven percent in the European electric vehicle market last year, Transport & Environment predicts they could reach 11 percent this year and 20 percent by 2027.

Before the EU imposed tariffs on Chinese vehicles last Wednesday, Bloomberg Adria analyst Ilija Nešić assessed that Stellantis was significantly ramping up its investment in electric vehicles, hoping to emulate the Chinese model of vertical integration and potentially outplay them at their own game. From a strategic standpoint, this move is unusual as many manufacturers are scaling back their investments in EVs, revealing that the industry as a whole may have overestimated the demand for EVs.

He states that consumer enthusiasm is waning due to high prices (on average 30 percent higher than equivalent vehicles with internal combustion engines), concerns about range, ESG uncertainties, and underdeveloped infrastructure.

Additionally, EVs have proven to be a burden on manufacturers’ margins, while vehicles with internal combustion engines support margins. This is reflected in the fact that pure electric vehicle manufacturers have had a stronger impact on profitability – especially Tesla.

Nešić notes that regulations, such as the European plan to phase out internal combustion engines by 2035, will permanently change the market, but players who have invested heavily in pure electric vehicles have bitten off more than they can chew, and the technology is far from perfectly applicable.

Stellantis likely reached the same conclusion, hence playing it safe by announcing a hybrid model in Kragujevac alongside the electric one.

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