It was a great day on Monday for the auto manufacturing industry in Windsor and Brampton, as manufacturer Stellantis announced that it is investing $3.6 billion in the company’s plants in those cities. The projects, which are also supported by significant contributions from provincial and federal governments, will include Stellantis modernizing its plants to build the “electric vehicles of the future,” as well as updating its Automotive Research and Development Centre in Windsor.
The announcement was lauded by politicians as an indicator that Ontario is quickly becoming a leader in developing and building the cars of the future. “Today is yet another example that our plan to build Ontario is delivering huge wins for workers and communities all over this province,” said Premier Doug Ford. “Ontario has everything it needs to be North America’s auto manufacturing powerhouse once again”.
The plan is for Stellantis to retool and modernize the plants in Windsor and Brampton, converting them to flexible, multi-energy vehicle assembly facilities; as well as build two new research and development centres focusing on electric vehicles and EV battery technology. Ontario is supporting all these critical investments with up to $513 million, with a slightly higher investment from the federal government.
Stellantis will also modernize its Automotive Research and Development Centre in Windsor by expanding and building two Centres of Competency. The Electric Vehicle and Battery Pack Testing Centres of Competency will establish Ontario as a major research and development hub for the company across all stages of production—from design to development. In addition to R&D, the centres will provide major opportunities for local talent, universities, colleges, and start-ups to participate in the development of Ontario’s EV ecosystem.
The hubs will be central to Stellantis’ R&D operations in North America and serve the company’s worldwide needs for technology, process and product development. Ontario is supporting this critical R&D investment with a commitment of up to $94 million.
The announcement is also positive news for workers and their unions. “We are in the middle of the biggest revolution in the auto industry since the conception of the assembly line in 1913,” says Dave Cassidy, Unifor Local 444 President. “Now, because of Unifor’s auto-bargaining vision, Ontario is well placed to play an essential role in the new motoring revolution. I want to thank Stellantis and the federal and provincial governments for recognizing the value in our Unifor members and their families.”