CASA GRANDE, Ariz. - On Dec. 1, the factory for the new Lucid Air car was completed. This means soon, new Arizona-built electric cars will hit the roads.
Not too long ago, an area about a 50-mile drive south of Phoenix, where the nearly 1 million square foot facility now sits, was just dirt. Now, the facility is built, and it was built future-ready, meaning it can balloon to 5 million square feet in just a few years.
"It’s the new kid on the block and it’s scared some people already," said Peter Hochholdinger with Lucid.
Inside the facility's walls, the assembly line is being fine tuned before production is fully started in Spring 2021 on the next wave of electric vehicles. The Lucid Air’s range is billed at over 500 miles.
"It has to be like a fine-tuned orchestra to work together," said Hochholdinger.
The reality of this massive factory has hit Casa Grande. The once small town, located in Pinal County and halfway between Phoenix and Tucson, has come to life. Building permits at the city are up 90% year over year.
"We’re on the cutting edge of this new technology of this new industry," said Casa Grande Mayor Craig MacFarland.
With production now just a few months away, Lucid will bring in a few thousand jobs, but that’s just the beginning.
"With Nikolas' location next to Lucid, you’re starting to see a clustering event, and with more and more suppliers, now there’s two companies building on each other, it’s a cycle of success," said Casa Grande Economic Development Director Richard Wilkie, referring to another electric vehicle facility, operated by Nikola Motors, that is located nearby.
Hochholdinger says Casa Grand Is right where they want to be.
"It’s a perfect site, and then I must say, you folks in Arizona are so open to work on technology, and to worm and dial and everything, like, I’m really excited about the team there," said Hochholdinger.