Lucid will not release the Air Luxury EV sedan this spring as planned. Lucid Motors hopes to release its flagship model in the third quarter of 2021. Car and Driver covered the delay and the causes behind it.
Lucid Air buyers will be left waiting
Lucid Motors announced the Air in 2016. Half a decade later, customers are still waiting for the chance to purchase this opulent EV. The first Lucid delay was due to testing setbacks. It’s unclear just how late the highly-anticipated electric sedan will be released.
Lucid announced that it hopes to release the 2021 Air in the second half of the year. It’s impossible to say when the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic will no longer impact the automotive industry. Lucid refuses to compromise on the integrity of its design. It’s likely the maker would continue to delay production if supply issues persist.
How COVID-19 affected Lucid’s supply chain
Since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, nearly every primary industry has suffered from historically low sales and other disruptions. The automotive industry has proven its strength, but it felt the effects. Production has been at a standstill in many countries leaving automakers without necessary components and materials.
Many manufacturers have remained open but at drastically reduced levels. Worker safety has also influenced changes in production rates. Economists have predicted that most industries will not return to pre-COVID numbers until at least 2023 however, improvements may be gradual.
Production delays were anticipated from Lucid
Consumers and industry observers alike remain skeptical of EV startups until there is ample proof of viability. It’s common for new makers to experience release delays or outright production shutdowns.
Peter Rawlinson heads lucid Motors, former Tesla engineer and one of the primary designers of the Model S. Rawlison helped launch Lucid Motors in 2007.
Air is Lucid Motors first release. In September 2020, the company announced a second concept, an SUV called Project Gravity. Little is known about Lucid’s second concept apart from a soft release timeframe of 2022. If the supply chain doesn’t recover quickly, production of Project Gravity could be affected as well.
The delay cost Lucid an edge over Tesla
Excitement for the Air has been building since Lucid announced the luxury sedan. The initial reported range of the Air was 517 miles. This surpassed the range of even the longest-running Tesla at the time. Since then, Lucid’s competitor announced a Model S update that increased the car’s range to 520 miles.
Losing the distinction of making the most extended range EV to a production delay is par for the course in the automotive industry. Makers are in constant motion. Stalling the release of a much-anticipated release could spell trouble for a brand still fighting to establish its place among competitors.