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January 22, 2024
The Stellantis STLA Large EV platform.Stellantis
Italian/Franco/American automotive conglomerate Stellantis (with a Dutch headquarters), the corporate parent of U.S. brands Chrysler, Dodge, Ram, and Jeep, has released amazing claims for its upcoming STLA Large Platform for full-size EVs that fall short of promising invisibility and teleportation, but only just.
The company says these future EVs, scheduled for launch starting this year, will offer 500 miles of driving range on a single charge, employ either 400-volt or 800-volt battery systems, and it can even accommodate conventional combustion and hybrid-electric powertrains.
They’ll be available in front-drive, rear-drive, and all-wheel-drive configurations, using drive modules that integrate the motor, inverter, and gear reduction into a single unit for each powered axle.
Stellantis tells us that the STLA Large platform is engineered for technical flexibility with a base set of components whose cost-efficient manufacturing processes can be duplicated in multiple assembly plants.
The STLA Large EVs can carry a standard 85-kilowatt-hour battery and one as large as 118 kWh, which means the vehicles will have to deliver unprecedented efficiency to go the promised 500 miles per charge. They will accomplish this in part through the use of more efficient systems such as the cabin heating/cooling system, steering, braking assist, and propulsion that are designed to minimize energy consumption. This will include using silicon carbide semiconductors in the vehicles’ power inverter to maximize the efficiency of that system.
The claimed 4.5 kWh per minute charging rate means that the STLA Large vehicles will recover the 71 kWh between 20 percent and 80 percent state of charge in just 16 minutes. That’s not the only way STLA Large vehicles will be fast; the company predicts 0-60 mph acceleration times in the 2-second range.
The platform’s flexibility accommodates surprisingly large variations in vehicles’ wheelbase, overall length, overall width and height, and ground clearance. Stellantis says that STLA Large vehicles can vary 14.8 inches in overall length and 5.2 inches in width, rolling on a platform whose wheelbase can vary as much as 8.1 inches. Off-road models can boost ground clearance by 5.8 inches compared to low-slung car versions.
Available variations in the STLA Large platform include a variety of suspension modules and powertrain cradles that can optimize include ride, handling, and comfort for the specific vehicle type. Key dimensions, such as the front spindle to the driver’s feet, front and rear overhang, and passenger compartment legroom, can be adjusted to suit the vehicle’s purpose. STLA Large uses advanced high-strength materials for maximum stiffness with minimal weight,
The Jeep models using these underpinnings will have the off-road chops to earn that brand’s credible Trail Rated badge. The platform supports off-road tires as large as 32.8 inches in diameter. STLA Large will be used in vehicles worldwide, but big cars are most popular in North America, so the first models will be Dodge and Jeep vehicles that are scheduled to launch this year.
They’ll be followed by Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, and Maserati models introduced through 2026, with a total of eight STLA Large-derived models planned. These will cover a variety of vehicle types, including cars, crossovers, and SUVs.
“Our goals for our STLA platforms are ambitious but this is what our customers need from us today,” Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares said. “Creating a family of vehicles from a well-engineered set of components that is flexible enough to cover multiple vehicle types and propulsions, overperforming any of our current products, will address each of our iconic brands’ customers. The flexibility and agility of this platform is its hallmark and will be a driving force for our success in the shift to electrification in North America.”
Despite announced delays in EV programs, Stellantis says the company remains on track to deliver a completely electric-powered fleet to European customers by 2030, with half of North American vehicles sold using battery power by that time. It says it will get there using 400 GWh of battery manufacturing capacity, including support from six battery manufacturing plants in North America and Europe.
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