Lucid (LCID) preps affordable EV to rival Tesla Model Y, Model 3

An affordable Lucid (LCID) electric car? Lucid has already started developing its high-volume EV lineup, poised to rival the Tesla Model Y and Model 3.

Lucid CEO Peter Rawlinson revealed that the company was aiming to release an EV priced around $50,000. Or, in Rawlinson’s words, “Right in the heart of Tesla Model 3, Model Y territory.”

Rawlinson explained in September, “I am not here to build an expensive car that only rich people can afford.”

Lucid started with premium products, like the Air sedan and Gravity SUV, because it was the only way the business would work financially.

Both the Lucid Air and Gravity have starting prices around $80,000. Although Rawlinson said Lucid aims to launch the affordable EV by the mid-to-late decade, many have misquoted it as 2030.

Rawlinson clarified to Autocar that Lucid is already developing the Tesla-rivalling EV. He said, “I’ve formally stated mid-late decade, and that has been completely misquoted as the end of the decade – 2030.”

2024 Lucid Air (Source: Lucid Motors)

Lucid CEO confirms affordable EV coming to rival Tesla

Lucid’s leader explained, “What I mean is ‘not 2025’. It’s a few years away, but it’s close,” adding, “It takes three and a half years to do a car, and we’ve started… and that wasn’t yesterday.”

Before Lucid, Rawlinson led the development of the Tesla Model S. He confirmed the new models would be aimed directly at Tesla’s sweet spot.

The mid-sized [line] is going to be overtly a Tesla competitor – Model 3, Model Y. This is the first time I’ve ever said it: we’re going to compete in that market – high-volume family car.

Rawlinson assured the new EV line will be competitive because the automaker has “the most advanced technology, which means [it] can go farther with less battery.”

Lucid Gravity electric SUV (Source: Lucid)

More importantly, he added, “If you can go a certain distance with less battery, you can make that car more cheaply than anyone else.”

Lucid’s Air electric sedan is one of the longest-range EVs, with up to 516 miles, due to Lucid’s in-house powertrain components, battery chemistry, and design.

Lucid Air in Munich (Source: Lucid)

The EV maker signed into a strategic tech partnership with Aston Martin in June to help build electric performance cars. Lucid will supply its high-performance twin-motor unit, battery tech, and Wunderbox charging system.

Electrek’s Take

Lucid has struggled to ramp production and deliveries this year. Deliveries slipped from a peak of 1,932 in Q4 2022 to just 1,456 in the third quarter.

Output is also down. Lucid produced 1,550 vehicles in Q3, down 50% from its peak of almost 3,500 in Q4 last year.

As a result, Lucid cut its 2023 production target to 8,000 – 8,500 vehicles. That’s more than 40% less than its higher-end target (14,000) from last year.

The company hopes its new Gravity SUV can help spark life into the brand. With current prices upwards of $80,000, an affordable EV could help Lucid expand into new markets.

Fellow EV startup Rivian (RIVN) is also planning to launch cheaper electric models. Rivian found a partner to build its massive $5 billion mega plant in Georgia. The facility will be home to Rivian’s R2 vehicles. Starting prices are expected around $40,000 – $50,000.

Lucid is not looking to replace the Tesla Model Y, Model 3, or Model S with a lower-priced EV. Rawlinson previously said there’s a market for great electric cars. “The more people who get behind the wheel in our cars will ditch their gasoline car and move to a Lucid Air because it’s better.”

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