From Ottawa and Ontario $1 billion to retool Stellantis auto plants in Brampton and Windsor
TORONTO – The federal and Ontario governments are jointly investing more than $1 billion to help Stellantis reorganize its Canadian auto plants to produce electric vehicles. Canada will allocate exactly $529 million and Ontario $513 million.
Stellantis, the new company created a year ago by the merger of Fiat Chrysler and French PSA group, is investing an additional $2.4 billion in its electrification projects. These include the creation of flexible assembly lines that could produce battery electric and hybrid vehicles at Stellantis plants in Windsor and Brampton.
Innovation Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne says an earthquake is underway in the automotive sector and Canadian industry is playing an important role in all of this. “This is an important milestone for electric vehicles made in Canada,” Champagne said.
Announcing the major investment were Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Ontario Premier Doug Ford, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry François-Philippe Champagne, Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Natural Resources and Stellantis Chief Operating Officer for North America, Mark Stewart.
“We are building a world-class Canadian automotive industry for generations to come, an innovative economy and a clean future for all. This is what a healthy environment and a healthy economy look like,” Trudeau said. The prime minister was echoed by Ford. “Ontario has everything it needs to once again be the hub of North American automotive manufacturing. We are making sure that the cars of the future are produced in Ontario by Ontario workers,” the province premier added, while Stewart said Stellantis is grateful “to both the federal and provincial governments for their shared vision of creating a sustainable future.”
Last month, Canada and Ontario invested part of $259 million each to convert General Motors’ CAMI assembly plant in Ingersoll, Ontario, into Canada’s first large-scale commercial electric vehicle manufacturing factory.
In March, each of them pledged nearly $190 million for Honda’s Alliston, Ontario plant, including upgrading for electric vehicle production. Also in March, Stellantis and LG Energy Solutions also announced a joint investment of $5 billion to build the first large-scale electric vehicle battery manufacturing plant in Canada.
With 500,000 jobs and a contribution of $16 billion to Canadian GDP, the automotive sector is a key part of the country’s economy, but it has moved slowly to adapt to the future of electric vehicle production.
There are currently only a few zero-emission vehicles from Canadian assembly lines, including the Chrysler Pacifica hybrid produced at the Stellantis plant in Windsor, the Lexus RX 450 hybrid and the Toyota RAV4 hybrid, both produced at Toyota’s Cambridge plant in Ontario.
Champagne said that with supply chain uncertainty and other global challenges, it’s a big win that Stellantis looks to Canada for these investments. “So I think that a company like Stellantis, which really has a choice between Europe or North America, decides to invest in Canada, is a big vote of confidence in our workers,” he said. Stellantis wants half of its sales in North America to be electric vehicles by 2030.
Canada is aiming higher with the goal that one in five new vehicles sold will be zero-emission by 2026 and 60% by 2030. By 2035, Canada intends to ban the sale of new internal combustion engines in passenger cars. In 2021, electric vehicles exceeded 5% of the total vehicles purchased for the first time.