Thursday, August 13, 2020

Electric cars: Lucid Motors

Another luxury electric vehicle is coming to market with hopes of dethroning Tesla.  It is the Lucid Air and it is slated to be revealed on Sept. 9, 2020.
  • Founded: 2007
  • Owner: Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (67%)
  • Headquarters: Newark, California
  • Founders: Sheaupyng Lin, Bernard Tse, Sam Weng
  • https://lucidmotors.com

Origins: Founded as Atieva in 2007 by Bernard Tse, a former Tesla director, Sam Weng and Sheaupyng Lin. The company initially focused on battery packs for vehicles in China but pivoted in 2014 to building its own car.

Market: Initially aimed at the U.S. with some exports to Europe. Lucid sees a huge market in China but will likely need a plant there to make the vehicles cost-effective.


Lucid recently made headlines with a claimed driving range of 517 miles for its upcoming Air model. That’s currently more than any other mass-produced EV on the market by a long shot. It achieved this with a 113-kilowatt-hour battery.
That is much better than Tesla’s longest-range Model S—which in June was the first EV to earn a 400-mile plus rating from the Environmental Protection Agency.



Charging time for the Air hasn’t been released, but we expect it to charge faster than any current mass-produced EV, thanks to its 900-volt electrical architecture. That’s more than the Porsche Taycan’s 800-volt system and more than double that of Tesla’s 400 volts. When Lucid unveiled the Air in 2016, it said it would have 1,000 horsepower with its dual-motor setup. That hasn’t changed, and it’s possible the number could increase a little when the production version debuts. That’s a lot of power, more than most supercars. And there’s more: A tri-motor model with a mind-numbing 1,800 hp is in the works. Lucid says the upcoming Air can hit 60mph in 2.5 seconds.


We expect the Air to come with a long list of driver-assist tech, thanks to its semi-autonomous system called Lucid Dream Drive. Unlike the Model S, the Air will have a driver monitoring system and lidar sensor (short for Light Detection and Ranging). In addition to the lidar sensor, the Air will also come equipped with 32 sensors. These consist of camera, radar, and ultrasonic sensors. Driver-assist features include a surround-view camera, blind spot monitoring, cross-traffic protection, traffic sign recognition, automatic braking, adaptive cruise control, lane centering, headlight assist, traffic drive-off alert, and a self-parking system. At its debut, we should learn if these sensors and features will be standard or optional.

   

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