Lucid’s $50,000 Tesla Challenger Under Development, CEO Suggests

If you tell me right now that California-headquartered Lucid plans to become a mass-market electric vehicle manufacturer, I’d urge skepticism. So far, Lucid’s story has been quite the opposite.

The Air electric sedan has a starting price upwards of $80,000 before tax credits and the Air Sapphire—yes that Bugatti Chiron shaming rocketship—has an MSRP of a whopping $249,000. The upcoming Gravity SUV won’t be cheap, either. But CEO Peter Rawlinson has indicated that Lucid’s aspirations extend beyond the two EVs seen so far.

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Getting a new car company up and running is a daunting task, even if you have some serious investor support like Lucid does. Typically, startups lean on high-profit margin luxury EVs to make a mark before diving into more affordable, mass-market cars to widen their appeal.

“The mid-sized [EV] is going to be overtly a Tesla competitor—Model 3, Model Y. This is the first time I’ve ever said it: we’re going to compete in that market—high-volume family car,” Rawlinson told U.K.-based Autocar.

He added that the next model line-up would slot in the $50,000 space, which is closer to the current inventory prices of the Tesla Model Y. The Model 3, on the other hand, can sell at well under $30,000 when federal and state-level tax credits are applied.

One of the few things Tesla struggled early on with the Model 3 and Model Y line-up was quality blemishes. Minor fit and finish inconsistencies and panel gaps have been widely reported. Lucid could learn from Tesla’s experience and bring tighter quality control for its upcoming models to stand apart right from the get-go.

Another area it could have an upper hand is range—the Air Grand Touring is already the longest-range EPA-certified electric car in the U.S. with over 500 miles of range. Sure, the smaller cars will have a smaller battery, but Lucid could bank on its expertise as a former battery company and target segment-leading range figures—we all know that range can be a dealbreaker.

That’s pretty much all we know about Lucid’s future line-up so far. What do you think of Lucid’s plans? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.