Stellantis has officially launched its first circular economy hub to remanufacture engines, gearboxes, and high-voltage EV batteries, as well as recondition and dismantle vehicles.
The carmaker has invested €40m ($42.7m) in the 73,000 sq.m facility, which is located at its Mirafiori plant complex in Turin, Italy. Stellantis has recovered 55,000 sq. m of that space from a partially unused facility.
The company said it expects the circular economy business to be worth €2 billion in revenue by 2030.
Stellantis said the primary objective of the facility, called the Sustainera Circular Economy Hub, would be to extend the life of parts and vehicles. Once those options were exhausted the company is looking to remanufacture parts and recycle materials collected during the process, as well as from end-of-life vehicle dismantling, to build new vehicles and parts. The hub will operate according to Stellantis’ declared 4R strategy to remanufacture, repair, reuse and recycle.
“We are industrialising the recovery and sustainable reuse of materials, building new technologies and advanced capabilities as we grow in this area,” Stellantis’ CEO Carlos Tavares. “We know that our commitment to remanufacturing, repairing, reusing and recycling will not only take pressure off our planet, but it will also bring financial value to Stellantis, safeguarding our shared future as we quickly transform our production and consumption business model.”
Equipment and machinery for the facility was repurposed from other locations bringing a 55% saving compared to purchasing new machinery and equipment, according to the company.
Supplying affordable alternatives
Stellantis outlined some specifics of the operations to be carried out at the facility in Turin. It said that used, worn or defective components, such as engines, gearboxes and EV batteries will be disassembled, cleaned and remanufactured to original OEM specifications. It said the aim was provide a sustainable and affordable alternative source of spare parts under the Sustainera label. The company said it aims to manage over 50,000 remanufactured parts at the facility by 2025, rising to 150,000 by 2030. The sorting centre at the facility will take in an estimated 2.5m worn parts, known as cores, by 2025, increasing to 8m by 2030.
In terms of vehicle reconditioning, the carmaker will use new, remanufactured or used parts and then reintroduce them through Spoticar, its manufacturer-certified used-vehicle programme, and the Stellantis &You, sales and services network.
When end-of-life vehicles are finally dismantled at the hub, parts will be remanufactured, reused or recycled for useful material. Used parts will integrate the stock available from Stellantis’ partner B-Parts to source the Sustainera Reuse offer.
The carmaker said the overall effort was about cutting the environmental impact of production and better managing its ambitious target of reaching carbon net zero by 2038. At last the inauguration of the hub on November 23, Stellantis chairman John Elkann said the hub “will be a blueprint plant in the automotive sector that combines environmental respect with economic development”.
The latest recycling investment follows the MoU that Stellantis signed with Orano last month to recycle materials from end-of-life EV batteries and gigafactory scrap.
Stellantis is not along in its efforts to recycle EV batteries. Last week Toyota announced it is working with industry partners including Jera and Redwood Materials to find new uses for end-of-life EV batteries as well as sustainable recycling.