Stellantis already has a manufacturing presence on the African continent, but it looks like it now wants to grow its footprint on the continent. The all-electric small city car the Citroen Ami is made in Morocco and exported to several European countries. It is also used locally by companies such as the Morocco Post for last-mile deliveries. It has a sibling called the Opel Rocks-e which is is produced at Stellantis’ plant in Kenitra, Morocco.
Recently, Stellantis signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) to develop a manufacturing facility in South Africa. Last November, Stellantis also signed an automotive specifications agreement with the Algerian Investment Promotion Agency (AAPI) ratifying the framework agreement signed on October 13, which launched the development of industrial, after-sales, and spare parts activities for Fiat, one of Stellantis’ iconic brands, as well as the development of the automotive sector in Algeria. This is part of a first wave of investments from Stellantis and its suppliers that will total over €200 million to manufacture four models.
Algeria is positioned as one of the key contributors to Stellantis’ Middle East and Africa (MEA) Dare Forward 2030 strategic plan. The launch of the Fiat brand will pave the way for Stellantis MEA’s ambition to reach one million vehicles sold in the region by 2030 with 70% regional production autonomy.
The Tafraoui–Oran plant construction phase will be completed by August 2023 and production for the first Fiat 500 is planned by the end 2023. By 2026, the plant will create nearly 2,000 new local positions and reach a localization rate of over 30% and a production capacity of 90,000 vehicles per year, ultimately producing four Fiat models. To ensure a high level of service for Algerian customers, the sales and after-sales network will cover 28 Wilayas in Algeria by the end 2023.
As part of the wider initiative, Stellantis has launched six Fiat models in the Algerian market and deliveries start today, March 21. The 6 models, with summaries picked off from Stellantis, are:
Fiat 500 Hybrid
Fiat says this is the first hybrid vehicle in Algeria. Available in the hatchback version, powered by a 1 liter 3-cylinder engine that delivers 70 HP, the 500 Hybrid reduces CO2 consumption and emissions by up to 20%.
The “Dolcevita” opening edition will come in the three colours of the Italian and Algerian flag: Rugiada Green, Gelato White, and Passione Red.
The compact SUV with Italian style offers peace of mind and safety at the wheel.
State-of-the-art connectivity is provided by a Uconnect 7” HD LIVE touchscreen, with Apple CarPlay integration and Android Auto compatibility.
It is available in two versions: entry level and top of the range with a 1.4 petrol 140 HP engine complete with dual-clutch transmission.
The Fiat family mover is the ideal car for families looking for a functional car to meet every day travel needs.
Tipo is a car to go anywhere, from city centres to trips out of town. It is available in a sedan body and equipped with a 1.6 etorq 110 HP automatic transmission.
Versatile, spacious, flexible, and fit for everyone’s needs, the Doblò offers innovative and ingenious solutions to improve everyday driving.
The vehicle suits all the demands of professional workers, with a touch of Italian ingenuity. It comes as a van equipped with a 1.6 HDI 90 HP engine with manual transmission. With a load capacity up to 1 ton, it is perfectly suited for any daily mission.
Positioned as a stress-free partner for any worker, this is a van for true professionals — with the comfort of a car. It comes with a 2.0 HDI 150 HP manual transmission engine.
With a load capacity up to 1.4 tons, it offers modularity at its best with no compromise.
Ducato embodies 40 years of leadership and success in the LCV sector.
“A model that combines excellent characteristics of scope, volume, efficiency, flexibility technology, onboard comfort, safety and performance. With an eye for style.”
The 2.2 diesel 140 HP manual transmission engine powers a van with best-in-class load capacity: up to 2.2 tons.
Present at the ceremony to celebrate the launch of Fiat brand in Algeria were Mr. Ali Aoun, Minister of Industry and Pharmaceutical Production; Mr. Tayeb Zitouni, Minister of Commerce and Export; Mr. Giovanni Pugliese, Ambassadors of Italy in Algeria; Mr. Abdelkrim Touahria, Ambassador of Algeria in Italy; Mr. Samir Cherfan, Stellantis Middle East and Africa Chief Operating Officer; Mr. Olivier François, Fiat Chief Executive Officer and Stellantis Global Chief Marketing Officer; and Mr. Hakim Boutehra, Managing Director of Stellantis Algeria, Tunisia.
“Supporting the Fiat project and hence, the development of the automotive ecosystem in Algeria has an historical symbolism that reflects the long-lasting good relations between the two countries. By combining our efforts, this project will become a benchmark in terms of integrability and complementarity. Currently, we are conducting a study in the factory which is likely to open up great horizons to go beyond the primary ambitions,” said Mr. Ali Aoun, Minister of Industry and Pharmaceutical Production.
“Stellantis is committed to Algeria and will provide its extensive global and regional know-how in terms of manufacturing and commercial performance. We are bringing this expertise at the service of the FIAT project in Algeria to deliver state-of-the-art manufacturing and best-in-class commercial services to ensure the best customer experience in the market. I would like to thank the Algerian authorities, our local partners and the teams who are working extensively to make the FIAT Project in Algeria possible!” said Samir Cherfan, Chief Operating Officer, Stellantis Middle East and Africa.
“We celebrate the return to Algeria of Fiat: an iconic brand with one of the five longest automotive traditions in the world. Since 1899 our brand’s mission hasn’t changed: providing accessible, intelligent answers to each customer’s mobility needs. The 500 Hybrid will be the first FIAT to be built here followed rapidly by the Doblò and, in a few years, a brand-new model – now still in the hands of our designers – will also be produced in Algeria. But, today, we are already opening orders for the 500 Hybrid and for two ‘family stars’: Tipo and 500X, as well as for our ‘stars of the LCV world’: Ducato, Scudo and Doblò. So, in Algeria, there’s already a FIAT for every need,” said Olivier François, FIAT brand CEO.
One thing that stands out is that the lineup is full of ICE models. I had hoped the FIAT 500e would be part of the list, and perhaps a mention that an updated 500e could be made in Algeria in the future as well. As the transition to electric mobility accelerates in other parts of the world, it’s actually a good time for new plants and new model launches to focus on electrified plugin models, or perhaps ensure that any new lineup in a new market or production/assembly plant includes a share of plugin and full BEV models. Thus, it is disappointing to see no plugin models here. Let’s wait and see if Stellantis will add full BEVs soon to this market and other markets in Africa.
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