There is some proof that electricity might be the vehicle fuel of the future. Fiat-Chrysler (NYSE: FCAU) might convert its iconic luxury brand Maserati to electricity in the near future.
“I think we’re now in a position to acknowledge that at least one of our brands; and in particular Maserati, will, when it completes the development of its next two models, effectively switch all of its’ portfolio to electrification,” the company’s CEO Sergio Marchionne told the press.
Marchionne thinks half of Maserati’s models will be electric by 2022, USA Today reported. The Fiat heir’s revelation indicates a major change of strategy for Fiat-Chrysler which had been committed to diesel.
Chrysler has been receptive to electrics lately; it has brought out a plugin hybrid model of the popular Pacifica minivan. There might also be plans to bring out an electric Pacifica soon.
Why is Fiat Chrysler Electrifying?
Fiat-Chrysler is embracing electricity because a number of governments including those in France, India and the United Kingdom have announced plans to stop selling internal combustion vehicles by 2040.
Another big factor is China, a growing market for luxury cars where the government is increasingly hostile to gasoline and diesel. China has a massive pollution problem and an aversion the kind of foreign military entanglements oil dependence can lead too.
Beijing’s leaders want to avoid the American fate of getting bogged down in an endless Middle Eastern war. Since China is among the world’s fast growing economies and markets for luxury cars, Marchionne wants to make it’s government happy.
Then there’s diesel which is increasingly unpopular because of pollution. One Chrysler brand; Dodge has been named in the diesel emissions cheating scandal that burned Volkswagen.
Interestingly enough, Marchionne is not very happy or enthusiastic about electric vehicles.
“My aversion to electrification is based on pure cost issues,” Marchionne said. “What has made it mandatory is the fate of diesel.”
One wonders if this means that other popular Fiat-Chrysler brands like Jeep, Dodge and Ram trucks will electrify in the near future. An electric Jeep, an electric Dodge Grand Caravan and an electric Fiat might be big sellers.
Something is obvious though, electricity might be the future of luxury cars, and possibly all automobiles whether we like it or not.