When it comes to beating Tesla at electric cars, other automakers are giving it their best shot: Rivian won the electric truck race, Kia is undercutting them on price and Ford has a bunch of tricks (and trucks) up their sleeve. But no serious contender has been able to beat them where it counts: range. Well, until now.
On Thursday, EV startup Lucid Motors announced the official EPA range results for their first cars, and they beat Tesla. Apologies, they didn’t just beat Tesla, they trounced them. The long-range version of the company’s top-of-the-line car, the Lucid Air Dream Edition Range, is rated at 520 miles of range; that’s 115 more miles than the best Tesla, the Model S Long Range.
“Crucially, this landmark has been achieved by Lucid’s world-leading in-house EV technology, not by simply installing an oversize battery pack,” Peter Rawlinson, CEO and CTO of Lucid Group, said in a press release. “Our race-proven 900V battery and BMS technology, our miniaturized drive units, coupled with our Wunderbox technology endow Lucid Air with ultra-high efficiency, enabling it to travel more miles from less battery energy. The next generation EV has truly arrived!”
Rawlinson, it should be noted, is a former Tesla VP and was the chief engineer behind the Model S.
Is this a landmark achievement? Yes. Unfortunately, when Rawlinson says his Lucid cars have “truly arrived,” you shouldn’t take him literally. As we explained in July, despite hitting the stock market through a SPAC merger, Lucid is not yet selling cars to the public, having delayed the launch of its production vehicles. It is eyeing a launch sometime before the end of the year but hasn’t set an official date, though the release of official EPA numbers does point to that coming to pass.
The other reason not to count out Tesla, despite the obvious proprietary technological advancements Lucid has achieved? The long-range car they’re touting, the Lucid Air Dream Edition Range, starts at $169,000, almost double the starting price of the Tesla Model S ($89,990). The most affordable Lucid car that received EPA testing, the Grand Touring model (which has at most 516 miles of range), starts at $139,000.
The end of range anxiety may be on the horizon, but it costs six figures.
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