Stellantis has secured the future of Vauxhall’s Ellesmere Port factory by announcing it’ll become an electric van plant.
Stellantis will pump £100m into the plant which will become the car group’s first site to build a solely battery-electric model.
Production will switch from the Vauxhall Astra to the Peugeot e-Partner, Citroen e-Berlingo and Vauxhall Combo-e pure-electric vans and MPVs late next year.
Ellesmere Port will be building just the vehicles, however, and not the batteries as well.
The plant’s future had been in doubt for years, but today’s announcement safeguards around 1,000 jobs.
The car firm said in a statement: ‘Stellantis strong willingness to ensure a sustainable future for Ellesmere Port has been consistently supported by the UK government, the Cheshire West and Chester Council, Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise partnership and Chester College.’
Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares said: ‘Performance is always the trigger for sustainability and this £100m investment demonstrates our commitment to the UK and to Ellesmere Port.
‘I particularly want to thank our highly skilled, dedicated workforce for their patience and contribution; we never let them down.
‘Equally, I want to thank our partners the Unite Union for their open mind set and strong cooperation and, of course, the UK government for their continued support.
‘Producing battery electric vehicles here will support clean, safe and affordable mobility for the citizens.
‘Since 1903 Vauxhall has manufactured vehicles in Britain and we will continue to do so.’
UK government, secretary of state for business, energy and industrial strategy, Kwasi Kwarteng, added: ‘Ellesmere Port’s proud tradition in auto manufacturing will continue for many years to come thanks to today’s investment.
‘Stellantis’ decision to double down on their commitment to this site is a clear vote of confidence in the UK as one of the best locations globally for competitive, high-quality automotive production.
‘Today’s decision will not only power Ellesmere Port into a clean future, but will secure thousands of jobs across the region in the supply chain.
‘In this global race to secure electric vehicle production, we are proud to support Britain’s auto sector in this crucial transition as we work to build back better.’
Ellesmere Port first opened in 1964 and initially built the Vauxhall Viva before switching to the Astra in 1979.
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