Stellantis, Leapmotor officially launch joint venture to sell Chinese EVs in Europe this fall

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One week after reporting plans for a press event launching its new joint venture, Stellantis and Leapmotor have officially begun the new business venture together. The new JV, named “Leapmotor International,” will expand to sell Chinese EVs in Europe this fall, with additional markets to follow.

Today’s event is merely a confirmation of a launch we’ve been expecting for quite some time. Last fall, European automotive conglomerate Stellantis ($STLA) took a $1.6 billion stake in Chinese OEM Leapmotor.

In addition to gaining a 20% stake in Leapmotor, Stellantis’ investment also included forming a new joint venture in which Stellantis owns a 51% stake to sell the Chinese brand’s EVs in other markets. Europe had immediately been confirmed in the JV plans, but Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares wouldn’t rule out the US as another possible option.

This past March, the new partners announced their joint venture had been approved after Stellantis gained regulatory approval in China to continue its stake.

Last week, we followed reports that CEOs from both Leapmotor and Stellantis were preparing a press event to officially launch the Leapmotor International joint venture and divulge more specific plans for where the latter will sell the former’s Chinese-made EVs around Europe. We now have our answer.

  • Chinese EVs Europe
  • Chinese EVs Europe

Leapmotor Intl. to bring Chinese EVs to Europe and beyond

Per a release from Stellantis today, Leapmotor International is officially open for business following a press conference in China attended by Carlos Tavares and Jiangming Zhu, the respective CEOs. The companies shared intentions to scale quickly to bolster the value of each brand internationally.

The joint venture is headquartered in Amsterdam, Netherlands, and led by former Stellantis China executive Tianshu Xin as CEO. Carlos Tavares shared his thoughts on the joint venture and the potential Chinese EVs from Leapmotor hold in markets throughout Europe:

The creation of Leapmotor International is a great step forward in helping address the urgent global warming issue with state-of-the-art BEV models that will compete with existing Chinese brands in key markets around the world. Leveraging our existing global presence, we will soon be able to offer our customers price competitive and tech-centric electric vehicles that will exceed their expectations. Under Tianshu Xin’s leadership, they have built a compelling worldwide commercial and industrial strategy to quickly ramp-up the sales distribution channels to support Leapmotor’s robust growth and create value for both partners.

The joint venture is already laying the groundwork in Europe to bring Leapmotor’s Chinese EVs to new markets, starting with the family-friendly C10 and the T03 compact urban commuter (both pictured above).

Stellantis said it will wield its existing sales channels in Europe to launch and distribute the Chinese EVs as early as September 2024, targeting these markets first: Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, and Romania. Stellantis expects to have at least 200 points of sale throughout these markets by year’s end and over 500 by 2026.

In addition to Europe, Stellantis shared plans also to begin selling Leapmotor’s Chinese EVs in other regions before the end of the year as well:

  • The Middle East & Africa
    • Turkey, Israel ,and French Overseas
  • India & Asia Pacific
    • Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Malaysia, and India
  • South America

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