Lucid doesn’t yet offer electric vehicles, but it’s going to drive growth for the public
Lucid Motors is the new EV company to be made public by a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) prior to the delivery of any vehicle.
On Monday, the automaker revealed plans for a “reverse merger” with Churchill Capital Corp IV, whose shares are already listed on the New York Stock Exchange. A reverse merger happens when a private corporation is taken over by a company that is already publicly traded, in this case the SPAC explicitly set up for that reason.
The transaction would provide Lucid with around $4.4 billion in cash, and the company is estimated at $24 billion, according to a press release.
Peter Rawlinson, former Tesla Model S Chief Engineer, will continue to serve as CEO and CTO. In a statement, he said that the funding of the deal will be geared towards the expansion of Lucid’s Arizona plant, as well as new companies, including energy storage, and the supply of technology to other automakers.
Production of the Lucid Air sedan is expected to begin later this year. It will initially be available only in the Dream Version spec, with 1,080 horsepower, a 503-mile range and a base price of $169,000. The $88,000 base model is expected to be released in 2022.
Lucid plans to follow up with an SUV called Project Gravity. Scheduled to be introduced in 2023, it will fly on the same platform as the Air. In a Q&A after the launch of the Air production platform in late-2020, Rawlinson promised “a beguiling range of vehicles,” indicating that additional models are in the works.
Several other EV start-ups have been made public over the past year through reverse mergers with SPACs, aiming to raise funds to enter the capital-intensive auto market. Nikola, Canoo, Fisker, and Lordstown Motors are included in the list. Mullen Innovations and Faraday Future are also exploring SPAC reverse mergers.
One exception appears to be Rivian, which has now raised approximately $8 billion through numerous funding rounds, including $2.65 billion in a round that ended earlier this year. The startup plans to launch its electric pick-up truck R1T and electric SUV R1S later this year.
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