New Stellantis R&D hub in Windsor opens up more opportunities

Part of the big automotive announcement by Stellantis North American in Windsor on Monday is a new auto research and development center to develop electric vehicles and their batteries.

Stellantis said two new electric vehicle and battery pack testing centers of competence will be built next to the existing automotive research and development center on Rhodes Drive.

Stellantis Chief Operating Officer Mark Stewart said the centers will also give local talent, universities, colleges, and start-ups an opportunity to participate in the development of Ontario’s electric vehicle system.

He said 650 engineers will be hired to work at the facility.

“We’re opening new battery labs that we’re building on-site, another 100,000 square feet, where we’re going to really get ready for the technology changes,” said Stewart.

Stewart also said Stellantis will take a look at expanding co-op programs into local high schools in Windsor-Essex.

Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens is excited to hear that local high school students could have new wonderful worlds opened up to them.

“You want to start grooming kids for opportunities that they may not be aware of, and have them start taking the pathway that will get them there at the end of the day,” said Dilkens.

Ontario Minister of Economic Development Vic Fedeli said the province is highly confident that the necessary skilled workforce will be ready when required.

“As we see a real transformation in the electric vehicles sector. We’re seeing a transformation in the workforce as well into skilled trades. We’re highly confident, of course, that we’re going to have the people to fill all of these jobs,” said Fedeli.

Stellantis said the centers will establish Ontario as a major R&D hub for the company from design to development.

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