CASA GRANDE, Ariz. - Forty-five miles south of Phoenix lies the next evolution in electric cars.
Lucid Motors' newly-constructed, 730,000 square foot manufacturing is where the new Lucid Air electric car is starting to take shape. The facility is located in Casa Grande, just off Interstate 10.
Four years ago, Arizona beat our a dozen other states to become the new home of Lucid's flagship automobile.
"This is a very exciting day, and one we have been anticipating a while and working hard to keep under wrap," said Governor Doug Ducey, in 2016, when he and executives with Lucis announced a multi-year partnership to create thousands of new jobs, and inject more than $700 million into the local economy.
Following several delays and an influx of cash from Saudi Arabia, Lucid is now back on track with production.
"We already have the first robots coming to life. We are already moving the first equipment and dialing that in," said Peter Hochholdinger, Vice President of Manufacturing with Lucid Motors.
Hochholdinger says the company is committed to getting the Lucid Air out on the road by early 2021.
"I think it's going to be a game changer for electrical vehicles, and a lot of people will think 'wow, if that's the spec of these cars now, then why not buy one?'" said Hochholdinger.
The car's specifications rival its nearest competitor, the Tesla Model S.
"It is the fastest vehicle on the quarter mile, at 9.9 seconds. It is the vehicle with the longest range available on the market, with 517 miles. When you see it from a charging perspective, it is the fastest charging range on the market. It is the first vehicle with bi-directional charging, so it can also provide energy to your house," said Hochholdinger.
All of this, however, won't come cheap. The base model is expected to come in at around $60,000, while a higher end version could cost more than $100,000.
"It;s all about quality. It's all about getting a luxury vehicle to a state where the customer is blown away by the quality he sees in the vehicle," said Hochholdinger.
As demand for the Lucid vehicles grows, so does the factory in Casa Grande. The company already has plans to triple in size over the next decade, to include the possibility of producing different models in the future.
With the expansion also comes more jobs. Lucid is training and hiring future employees at their site, with an emphasis on hiring veterans for those positions.