Lucid Vs. Tesla Vs. Everybody

Lucid Motors has been attempting to leapfrog over Tesla for a foothold within the luxurious electrical automobile market, and the going has been powerful. Nonetheless, with the backing of the Saudi Arabia Public Funding Fund and different traders, the startup has been taking its finest shot. That features opening new retail studios at modern procuring locations, apparently with the purpose of catching extra eyeballs among the many excessive rollers.

Lucid Motors electric vehicle

The US startup Lucid Motors remains to be alive, kicking, and able to crack the electrical automobile code in Norway. (Screenshot courtesy of Lucid Motors.)

The Different Luxurious Electrical Automobile From California

California-based Lucid Motors will get sky-high marks on efficiency from CleanTechnica and different auto business observers (see our full protection right here), however the firm has been excruciatingly gradual to push its electrical autos into the market after launching in 2007. A mortgage from the US Division of Vitality would have helped, however one other California startup you’ll have heard of — Tesla Motors — beat Lucid to the punch, receiving $465 million in funding from the company’s Mortgage Packages Workplace in 2010.

Ford and Nissan are among the many different automakers to profit from a torrent of public financing by means of the Mortgage Packages Workplace, which is tasked with accelerating the electrical automobile transition, amongst different cleantech objectives. Sadly for Lucid and different electrical automobile stakeholders, the workplace was all however shuttered after former President Trump took workplace in 2017.

To not fear. Lucid Motors made up the distinction, after which some, with an fairness providing final 12 months that raised $1.5 billion. “Lucid raised nearly all of that money by way of a personal sale of almost 86 million shares to an affiliate of its largest investor, Saudi Arabia’s Public Funding Fund,” reported CNBC on December 19.

The fairness providing was a logical followup to Lucid’s announcement of February 28 final 12 months, during which the corporate described plans for constructing its first EV manufacturing facility exterior of its current US manufacturing facility in Arizona. The brand new manufacturing facility is to be situated within the King Abdullah Financial Metropolis in Saudi Arabia.

If all goes based on plan, the brand new manufacturing facility will ship 150,000 autos per 12 months into the worldwide market.

That’s fairly a step up for Lucid, which issued manufacturing steerage in December anticipating simply 6,000 to 7,000 electrical autos per 12 months from its Arizona manufacturing facility.

Lucid Simply Can’t Stop The Electrical Automobile Market

Different electrical automobile startups have had a rocky begin however have lived to see one other day (to date). Nikola is one which involves thoughts. Lightyear has additionally been on a curler coaster experience of late.

Lucid has the benefit of a strong backer within the Saudi Arabia Public Funding Fund, which launched in 1971 and at the moment ranks because the sixth largest sovereign wealth fund on this planet. In the event you’re questioning why an oil-rich nation is keen to see one other electrical automobile startup succeed, that’s a great query. As with different funds of its kind, the PIF is an financial improvement software geared toward diversification. Monetary sustainability is the purpose, whether or not or not it units the hair on hearth among the many “anti-woke” Republican workplace holders within the US.

What Lucid doesn’t have is the title recognition of Tesla, or the economies of scale the Californian firm has now achieved. The corporate can be competing with established legacy automakers which are transitioning their luxurious automobile know-how to fulfill high-end electrical automobile consumers.

With that in thoughts, let’s see what the corporate has been as much as because the success of its fairness providing final December.

One key piece of the general public profile puzzle fell into place on January 25, when Lucid drew consideration to its motorsports electrical drive unit.

“For Lucid, the switch of expertise between motorsports and street automobiles is a two-way symbiosis. This new motorsports drive unit builds instantly upon the groundbreaking powertrain expertise developed in-house by Lucid and confirmed on the street in each Lucid Air,” defined Lucid Group CEO and CTO Peter Rawlinson in a press assertion.

The 469 horsepower unit weighs simply 70.5 kilos, that includes the identical “state-of-the-art high-voltage steady wave winding and proprietary microjet cooling system that may be discovered within the motors powering the Lucid Air sports activities sedan,” the corporate enthused.

In keeping with Lucid, its motorsports drive unit has already been tapped for normal use in an electrical automobile racing circuit. The corporate didn’t title names, however my cash is on the Method E EV racing circuit. Lucid may be in competition for the NASCAR circuit, which has expressed an curiosity in establishing an electric-drive inventory automobile collection sometime. When you have another guesses, drop a be aware within the remark thread.

Lucid Goals At The Impulse Shopper

Lucid has additionally been angling to draw automobile consumers by establishing retail studios in upscale procuring districts. In spite of everything, if you happen to’re going to spend tens of hundreds of USD on jewellery, furs, and purses, why not toss a luxurious electrical automobile into the procuring cart.

“Lucid Studios permit clients to expertise the model and procure details about its merchandise in areas that underscore the corporate’s distinctive design aesthetic,” the corporate explains. “Guests who discover Lucid Studio will get a imaginative and prescient of how the corporate attracts inspiration from the wonder, innovation, and variety of its dwelling state of California.”

Lucid is closing in on 40 studio areas, together with the Al Nakheel Mall in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Legacy West in Plano, Texas; and Odeonsplatz in Munich, Germany.

The most recent addition to the roster is a brand new studio on Karl Johans gate in Oslo, Norway, which opened on March 4. That’s fairly a daring step. A substantial variety of electrical automobile consumers in Norway have already put their belief in different automakers.

The Norwegian Highway Federation ran the numbers for 2022 and got here up with 138,265 new 100% electrical autos registered within the nation, representing virtually 80% of latest auto gross sales. (We additionally publish month-to-month reviews on the Norwegian auto and EV market right here.)

Among the many prime 10 automakers representing in Norway, Tesla was the frontrunner with 12.2% market share. The EV startup Polestar additionally made a great exhibiting. The one different automakers to crack the highest 10 had been legacy manufacturers with many years of title recognition beneath their belts: Volkswagen, Skoda, BMW, Volvo, Hyundai, Audi, and Ford.

Lucid might elevate its profile in Norway and elsewhere by hooking up with a legacy agency, and that would occur if the most recent buzz is precise information and never simply rumor.

Final month, Georg Kachar of Automobile and Driver famous that Aston Martin seems to be winding down its relationship with AMG, the efficiency unit of Mercedes-Benz, as a part of its transition from inside combustion expertise to an all-electric lineup.

Kachar gave Aston Martin excessive marks for assembling a crack group of electrical automobile expertise, however he noticed {that a} strategic companion is the lacking hyperlink. Lucid and the Saudi Arabia Public Funding Fund might match the invoice, with Lucid standing to realize extra visibility from an alliance with 134 current Aston Martin sellers.

What do you suppose, might this occur? Apparently, Geely can be Lucid-curious, so keep tuned for extra on that.

Observe me on Trainwreck Twitter @TinaMCasey.

Discover me on LinkedIn: @TinaMCasey or Mastodon: @Casey or Publish: @tinamcasey


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