Automotive super group Stellantis has bought into Chinese electric car marker Leapmotor and now has the rights to import and market the brand’s vehicles into Europe.
This represents a turnaround for the Stellantis and in particular its boss Carlos Tavares, who has previously been highly critical of Chinese brands importing cars into Europe.
Leapmotor has been in business since 2015 and build its own motors and electronics to save cost and protect its inventions.
It currently makes three models; the T03 city car, a mid-sized SUV called the C11 and the C01, which rivals the Tesla Model 3.
The new agreement will allow Stellantis to access to Leapmotor’s technology and lower cost components. It will also have the rights to manufacture Leapmotor products outside China.
Currently the cars are all left-hand-drive which rules them out of being sold in the UK – however the next generation is expected to be offered to British buyers.