Lucid Group Inc. surged after the carmaker said it has started production of its debut electric sedan, with deliveries to begin at the end of next month.
The company initially will focus on a $169,000, limited-production Dream Edition of the Air sedan, which can run 520 miles (837 kilometers) on a charge. The first battery-electric Air vehicles destined for customers rolled off the factory line in Casa Grande, Arizona, on Tuesday, the company said in a statement.
The startup is considered one of the most-credible challengers to market leader Tesla Inc., in part because Lucid claims world-beating range for its vehicles. Lucid Chief Executive Officer Peter Rawlinson had been chief engineer for Model S sedan, Tesla’s longest-range vehicle, offering up to 405 miles, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Versions of the Air with less range and lower prices will begin deliveries after October, Newark, California-based Lucid said, without giving a specific date.
The shares advanced 9.1% to $26.77 at 9:39 a.m. Wednesday in New York. Lucid had more than doubled this year through Tuesday while the Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 13%.
Lucid said it has more than 13,000 reservations for the Air. The company has begun an expansion of its Arizona factory, with plans to add 2.85 million square feet (265,000 square meters) of space to increase manufacturing capability.
Production of its next vehicle — the battery-electric Gravity sport utility vehicle — is expected to begin in 2023.
–By Ed Ludlow (Bloomberg)