Lucid Group's Q4 and fiscal year 2021 earnings report included official confirmation that the company will build its second vehicle assembly plant in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Reports linking Lucid Group to Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) surfaced as early as 2018, with the company confirming an investment of more than $1 billion from the Arab country's sovereign wealth fund.
The collaboration has now been greatly expanded as Lucid has announced a "long-term plan to bring advanced automotive manufacturing to Saudi Arabia to address global demand."
The EV startup announced the signing of agreements with the Ministry of Investment of Saudi Arabia (MISA), the Saudi Industrial Development Fund (SIDF), and the Economic City at King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC), laying the groundwork for a full production factory in Saudi Arabia.
Set to be built in King Abdullah Economic City, a mega-project on the Red Sea coast, Lucid Group's first overseas manufacturing plant will at first re-assemble Lucid Air vehicle "kits" that are pre-manufactured at the company's AMP-1 Manufacturing Facility in Casa Grande, Arizona. Over time, the plant fully owned by Lucid Group will build complete vehicles, with Lucid targeting a peak capacity of 150,000 vehicles per year.
In comparison, the company's existing plant is currently capable of 34,000 vehicles a year, although a Phase 2 expansion will increase capacity to 90,000 units a year—Project Gravity SUV included. Lucid plans to further expand to an annual production capacity of 365,000 vehicles in Arizona, which means that the company's global production capacity will exceed 500,000 vehicles per year when each facility reaches its target capacity.
In the initial phase, vehicles built in Saudi Arabia will be slated for the local market, but Lucid plans to export finished vehicles to other global markets, "including exclusive models designed to appeal to Lucid's discerning customers in the region and beyond."
"Lucid aspires to be a catalyst for change wherever we go, so it makes perfect sense that we are bringing electric vehicles to one of the world's biggest oil producing nations. Establishing a global manufacturing footprint is a practical, natural step and enables us to grow our brand, scale our business, and address worldwide and untapped market demand on an entirely new level, while also taking action to address climate change through inspiring sustainable transportation."
Peter Rawlinson, Lucid Group CEO
Lucid expects its new manufacturing facility to bring several thousand high-skilled jobs to Saudi Arabia, creating diverse job opportunities and supporting skills development for the region.
The California-based carmaker estimates that the location of its first international manufacturing plant in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia may result in up to $3.4 billion of value to Lucid over 15 years while enabling it to address growing demand for its products.
The company aims to start construction of its new plant in Saudi Arabia in the second half of this year and expects to complete it in 2025.