In the ever-growing electric-vehicle market, a slew of companies are vying to take on Tesla. Two of the most promising candidates are Rivian and Lucid Motors. Due to the epidemic, both companies have postponed their premiere cars, but expect to begin sales in 2021.
For years, Tesla has reigned supreme as the king of electric automobiles, despite attempts by established manufacturers and scrappy startups to usurp its throne.
Rivian and Lucid Motors, two of the most promising startup EV manufacturers, were on the verge of delivering their first vehicles in the United States this year. The epidemic, on the other hand, had different ideas.
Rivian informed customers who had booked Launch-Edition variants of its adventure-focused SUV and truck earlier this month that they would have to wait a few months longer for delivery. Rivian CEO RJ Scaringe informed clients in an email that the R1T truck’s introduction had been pushed back from July to September, and that the R1S SUV would now come later in the fall.
“The cascading impacts of the pandemic have had a compounding effect greater than anyone anticipated. Everything from facility construction to equipment installation, to vehicle component supply (especially semiconductors) has been impacted by the pandemic,” he said.
According to a spokesman for Rivian, the company originally delayed R1T delivery by a month in May owing to shipping difficulties and an ongoing semiconductor scarcity.
Lucid, however, postponed the introduction of its first premium car, the Air, until the second half of 2021. The automobiles were expected to be delivered in the spring. Lucid CEO Peter Rawlinson blamed the delay on the pandemic’s influence on the startup’s testing operations, supply chain, and sales and service preparations in a letter.
The epidemic forced Lucid to change its plans for the second time; the company had originally intended to begin producing the Air in late 2020.
The Air is expected to give the Tesla Model S a run for its money when it reaches the streets — on paper, at least — with a projected range of more than 500 miles and a starting price of approximately $77,000. With its 400-plus-mile Model S, Tesla has long been the industry leader in range.
Lucid and Rivian are two of the most advanced electric vehicle (EV) startups. Most new businesses attempting to duplicate Tesla’s success lack functioning facilities, showrooms, and a large number of binding preorders. Rivian has raised a large sum of money from investors such as Amazon and Ford. Lucid is planning to go public via a reverse merger, which would provide the company with $4.5 billion in new capital.
Although Lucid is on pace to begin shipping cars this year, Rawlinson told Insider that the epidemic has made the last stretch more challenging. Quality concerns have arisen with several of Lucid’s suppliers, issues that, under normal conditions, would have been resolved long ago with visits to suppliers. That was ruled out by the epidemic.
Rawlinson, on the other hand, wants to make sure that every aspect is perfect, which is why he extended the Air’s release date.
“This is a one-shot deal to get it right. Why don’t we go really conservative?” he told Insider.