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Faster Than a Ferrari, And Gaining Speed

It hasn’t been a great couple of weeks for electric vehicles, but Lucid Motors thinks 1,000 hp might brighten your outlook.

It hasn’t been a great couple of weeks for the electric vehicle industry.

First, Tesla went from the most highly valued car company in the world to facing criticism about its ability to meet production demands. Then earlier this week, we learned that Faraday Future has scrapped plans for its billion-dollar plant in Nevada after significantly downsizing its production forecasts.

Well, maybe this news from start-up Lucid Motors can brighten your e-vehicle outlook. The company first displayed its Air electric car at the 2017 New York Auto Show, claiming that the prototype had reached 217 mph at the Transportation Research Center test track in Ohio.

Just for a point of reference, that’s also the top speed of a Ferrari’s 480-volt, lithium ion battery-powered LaFerrari.

The folks at Lucid must have felt ties should remain in regular season hockey and nearly every soccer match I’ve ever watched, as they recently went back to the same test track believing the Air could be even faster.

They … were right. The Air reached a top speed of 235.4 mph, and Lucid thinks there is still room for improvement, as this car is still a prototype and was fitted with a roll cage and parachute for testing.

Also, Lucid is still perfecting the software that controls the car’s self-leveling air suspension, making tweaks to the front electric motor, and meddling with more aerodynamic wheels.

The end result could be a 1,000 horsepower-vehicle with a battery range of up to 400 miles. And while additional options will easily send the Air into six-figure territory, the base model will start closer to $60,000 … when production theoretically begins in 2019.

This is contingent on the company building a factory to actually make the cars, but it has chosen a site in Casa Grande, Arizona and is in the process of raising $700 million to fund construction. Lucid hopes to build 10,000 cars in the first year, eventually ramping up to around 50,000 annually.

In case you were wondering, the LaFerrari currently offers 949 horsepower and carries a price tag of around $1.3 million. But it has actually made 499 of the cars.

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