Lucid prides itself with the fact that its Air sedan offers more interior space for its wheelbase compared to a traditional ICE model. We’ve already experienced its roomy cabin, but in this video, Lucid’s CEO Peter Rawlinson explains what it took to get this concept into production, especially since sports car-like handling was also a top priority, as was, of course, ride quality.
We’ve also experienced the Lucid Air’s remarkable road manners first hand and it really is as fun to drive as they say it should be, although being a premium sedan, it ultimately needs to deliver on the passenger comfort front. Peter Rawlinson goes into quite some detail regarding the techniques used to achieve it, pointing to key details like the battery pack that was designed with this in mind.
The pack is thinner in the areas where occupants’ feet stay, thus eliminating the problem that some EVs face - occupants’ knees are too high for comfort and their legs don’t actually touch the seat cushion, like in the Mercedes-Benz EQA (which is based on an ICE model). This is not the case in the Air and it’s all down to how they designed the battery pack.
What made the task of having a spacious car even more difficult was Peter Rawlinson’s desire to create a vehicle with more compact outside dimensions compared to conventional large luxo barges of the same caliber. He wanted the wheelbase to not be excessively long, because even though this improves comfort, it detracts from the agility, which he deemed was a very important Air trait.
And they were only able to make the cabin as large as it is because an EV allows for much more flexibility when it comes to packaging, and it especially allows for the passenger compartment to be extended into what would be the engine compartment of an ICE vehicle. Lucid also added additional chassis strengthening and also integrated some of the car’s systems into these additional crossmembers.
It all seems to be a very smart integration of engineering and design, and this approach makes the Air a very unique (albeit very expensive) proposition. It will be interesting to see how the company applies these principles to its first SUV, a three-row model known as the Gravity, set to be launched in 2024.