It’s been nearly three years since Lucid Motors unveiled the Air.
The model was originally slated to go into production in 2018, but the company ran into the same problem faced by a number of other electric vehicle startups: lack of funding.
The company acknowledged the issue in 2017 and, at the time, there were rumors that Lucid was attempting to sell itself to Ford. That never happened, and the money issue was eventually solved when Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund agreed to invest $1 billion (£780 / €905 million) into Lucid.
Now that the company has the cash it needs, it is going ahead with its plans. In an announcement, the automaker confirmed they have broken ground on their factory in Casa Grande, Arizona. While there isn’t much to see at this point, Lucid said grading began in September and they’re now “drilling and forming the caissons that will provide the structural foundation of the facility.”
While work is just getting underway, Lucid says the plant will begin building the Air in late 2020. That’s an ambitious timeline, but at least the pieces are starting to fall into place.
The entry-level Air is slated to cost $52,500 after tax incentives and, according to its maker, provide “superior comfort, a better user interface and better performance than comparably priced BMWs and Mercedes-Benzes.”
As we have previously reported, the base model will be rear-wheel drive and have an electric powertrain that produces 400 hp (298 kW / 405 PS), while offering a range of 240 miles (386 km) on a single charge. Customers looking for more range will be able to order larger battery packs that enable the car to travel for 315 miles (506 km) or 400 miles (643 km) on a single charge. If things go as planned, we can also expect high performance variants, including one with all-wheel drive and up to 1,000 HP (745 kW / 1,013 PS).