Lucid Motors has struck again, 832 km range announced for the Lucid Air. The brand gives appointment to the world, the 09/09/2020 to present the Lucid Air in conditions that we imagine very specific.
To Tesla the difference, to Lucid the performance? At least that’s what the second one is trying to impose. Last week, its teams carried out new speed tests in Ohio, on a speed ring. Result: 235 mph, or 378 km/h.
The object of the offence, the Lucid Air Alpha Speed Car, thus aligns outstanding performances. These are those of a McLaren F1, which for a long time held the speed records for a production vehicle, before being (largely) dethroned by Bugatti’s ground-to-ground missiles, the Veyron and then Chiron, which kindly relegated the McLaren to the rank of friendly bumper cars.
Lucid’s previous tests concluded with a record speed of 350 km/h last April. The difference lies in the speed limiter, which in the meantime has been removed. Lucid does not fail to point out that these speeds will certainly not be those of the production models. What’s the point of reaching them?
A matter of image
The brand benefits in several ways. The first one is the image: Lucid has nothing else to sell, for the moment, but a concept and some images. The initial plans called for the first copies to be available in 2019 at the earliest. However, the brand has not let anything slip from its preliminary financing, estimated at 700 million dollars with a first tranche of 240 million dollars to start production of the inaugural series, the “Launch Edition” of 255 vehicles.
Finding your place
The second benefit is positioning: Lucid wants to find his place between Tesla for the electric approach and Bugatti for performance, with a first model delivering 1000 horsepower. The ration autonomy/price will be decisive. To date, there is talk of 60,000 dollars for a top-of-the-range EV with a range of 380 km. This would be much more expensive than a Tesla Model 3, offered for 35,000 dollars with only 35 km less range.
We learn every day
The last benefit is technological. By testing at such a speed, Lucid learns a lot from his own equipment. Measurements at over 370 km/h say a lot about tire resistance. Lucid’s engineers were also able to note that the suspensions did not drop fast enough during acceleration. The engine temperature was also higher than the one simulated by computer, which probably led to a review of the cooling efficiency.