Lucid CEO Peter Rawlinson believes the affordable electric vehicle of the future needs to focus on high efficiency and a small battery pack to drive down EV costs.
In an interview with Auto Express (via Teslarati), Rawlinson said Lucid's technology can help the mass-market EV industry to bring prices down. The correlation between high efficiency and small battery packs is key to accomplishing that, he stressed, noting that the driving range will become less relevant in 10 years.
"The biggest impact on the mass market car will be with smaller battery packs. My vision is could we get to six miles per kilowatt-hour? We're at 4.6 now. Could we get to six miles per kilowatt-hour with a fast-charging infrastructure, with overnight charging? The electric car of the future only needs 250 miles. We don't need 500-mile cars in the future, 10 years from now."
Rawlinson added that if an efficiency figure of six miles per kilowatt-hour can be achieved and the average buyer would only need 150 miles of range, that means future EVs could have 25-kilowatt-hour battery packs. That would obviously help drive down production costs and EV prices.
Gallery: 2023 Lucid Air Pure
"That's a $4,000 pack particularly with a bit of industrializing scale and battery manufacture. That's what we need to make a $25,000 car and that's what the environment and the world needs urgently to get masses into electric cars. You need the $25,000 car."
That said, Peter Rawlinson noted that Lucid does not have the financial power to develop and build a $25,000 EV on its own, but it could contribute to making it a reality via its tech supplying business that kicked off recently with the Aston Martin deal. The head honcho said he sees a lot of potential in this part of the business and is hoping that Lucid could become the EV equivalent of Intel.
"Now is Lucid going to make that? [the $25,000 car] No. It's a horrible thing to be making. But could we be the 'Intel Inside' for that car? The enabler? Absolutely. And that's where we could get the multiplier effect."
Rawlinson hinted at the "Intel inside" logo featured on many computers and said it "would be lovely to see 'Lucid Inside' on cars, too."
While building a $25,000 EV is out of the question, Lucid will deliver cheaper models than the $90,000 Air luxury sedan in the second half of the decade. First, the EV startup has to launch the Project Gravity SUV, for which deliveries are expected to begin sometime in 2024.
"After Gravity we're going to do Model 3 and Model Y competitors. We think around $50,000, maybe $48,000 – something like that. It's too early to say, but that's the vision," Rawlinson said.