Stellantis boss Alison Jones has said ‘reverse logistics’ need to be made as efficient as possible in order that the firm’s Distrigo network can efficiently handle more reclaimed core for remanufacturing.
Circular Economy Director Jones spoke to us at a presentation held to explain the VM’s commitment to the ‘circular economy’ where components previously fitted to vehicles are reused or remanufactured.
However, Jones admitted that in the UK, there is still work to be done in terms of collecting core and sorting paperwork in order that it can be sent elsewhere in Europe for remanufacturing.
“The challenge is how we take secondary raw material [core] because it sometimes comes under different legal classifications of waste across into mainland Europe and on to our [remanufacturing site in] Mirafiori or to our core centre,” she said. “We’ve worked through that and it has taken a while, but we now have a solution on how we can physically move [the core] across the border on to mainland Europe”.
Jones added that another challenge to overcome was the physical bulk of core collection. “It’s often the space that is the determining factor in our ability to [process core]”, she explained.
“So our Distrigo hubs are very large and are future-proof in terms of their size, but we need to get our reverse logistics very efficient in terms of picking that core up. We need to do that because we want to remanufacture it, turn it around and make it available to customers in the fastest possible time”.
She also answered our questions about the acceptance in the UK of reused body panels. On the Continent Stellantis owns B-Parts, a chain of breakers offering off-the-shelf used components, mainly body parts. Although Portugal-based B-Parts has bases in 15 countries, it does not have any UK sites and shipping here would be unacceptably slow for local bodyshops.
“We already have relationships with insurance companies and fleet companies as well. Its an area we need to go to because it is a matter of balancing the speed, where its easier for a bodyshop to put a new panel, rather than repairing the existing one or sourcing a used part, and that’s an area we need to look at so we can drive down waste – and reduce the cost for customers as well,” concluded Jones.