Faraday Future’s wheels are coming off

Faraday Future’s wheels are coming off

Faraday Future‘s wheels are coming off due to what its founder, Jia Yeutling, is calling a “big company disease,” being a cash crunch. LeEco, the Chinese equivalent of Netflix and parent company of two EV start-ups, Faraday Future in the USA and LeSee in China, is forced to sell its Silicon Valley property, earmarked for its US headquarters. The sale, reported by Reuters, to Chinese property developer, Genzon Group, will provide the company with $260 million much-needed cash.

LeEco, now known for overpromising and massively under delivering, claimed that its premium car, the Faraday Future FF91, is a “Tesla Killer.” LeEco unveiled the FF91 “Tesla Killer” at the 2017 CES in Las Vegas along with the LeSee concept electric vehicle. While the LeSee received acclaim the launch of the FF91, on the other hand, was a real doozie. Faraday Future quickly published a highly edited version of the launch on its website, but it was too late as real events quickly went viral. See the video at this link. LeEco has also partnered with Aston Martin on the RapidE, where it will help with the development of the zero emission technology.

Faraday Future, a contradiction in terms, is scaling back all its operations in the USA, with the headcount rumored to have halved over the last couple of months. The production facility in North Las Vegas has been scaled back significantly, and although ground-breaking started late 2016, it has just remained that, as no production facilities have been erected. The company could not even pay the $21 million deposit to Aecon despite being offered $300 million by the local authorities for building the assembly plant there. The new phased construction is in line with the company’s reduced model lineup down from 7 models to 2.

The 13-year-old LeEco is financially pressed on all fronts. Rumors have also been flying that it was exciting its India operations and shares in its flagship unit, Leshi Internet Information and Technology Corp Beijing lost 25% of its value in five months. LeEco, which products include consumer electronics and cellphones, such as the LePro phone were able to raise $2.2 billion from Sunac China Holdings, a property developer. The funds are however not earmarked for LeEco‘s electric car division.

Lucid Air announces competitive pricing

Lucid Air announces competitive pricing

Lucid Air announces competitive pricing

One of the few company’s being called a Tesla killer with a shot at it (however distant), the San Francisco-based Lucid Motors, today announced the pricing for its base model.

The base price for the Lucid Air will be $60,000 before Federal ($7,500) and State incentives, which compares extremely well with luxury ICE and PHEV vehicles such as Volvo, BMW, and Mercedes and delivers a superior performance being a fully electric vehicle. Some in the media billed the Lucid Air a Tesla Killer, much like Faraday Future also claimed, although FF’s claim seems very much like hot air then walking the talk. At least Lucid Motors management, beginnings, and the business plan seem much more grounded, and delivering an electric vehicle with a range of 240 miles below the Model S 60 which start at $68,000 for 218 miles seems like an aggressive shot across the bow. Lucid Air started off as Atieva, a developer of battery systems for electric vehicles.

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The features of the base model are listed as:

  • 400 horsepower;
  • Rear Wheel Drive;
  • Autonomous Drive ready, although no indication of the ability itself;
  • 32 cubic feet storage from two trunks;
  • 12-Way front seats;
  • Multi-lens LED headlights;
  • Four screens, three with interactive touch surfaces;
  • 5-seat configuration;
  • Ten advanced airbags;
  • Aluminum roof;
  • 19-inch wheels;
  • Ten speaker audio system;
  • over the software updates, similar to what Tesla offers.

The Lucid Air will be available in a number of options, all the way to what was presented in its Alpha show car, allowing it to compete in the large luxury car segment. The complete package will cost north of $100,000 and although final options were not released the company provided a glimpse on some of them, being:

  • 315 mile and 400-mile battery options;
  • All wheel drive twin motor configurations up to 1,000 horsepower;
  • Fully active suspension;
  • Glass canopy roof;
  • Rear executive seats with a 55 degrees recline;
  • 22-way front seats with massaging, heating, ventilation and dynamic bolsters;
  • 21-inch wheels;
  • 29-speaker audio system;
  • expanded leather trim.

The first 255 cars of the line will be Launch Edition vehicles, priced at over $100,000 and will also have unique colors and badging, signifying their special nature. 

It will take a lot to be a Tesla Killer in our viewpoint, but at least Lucid Air provides the consumer more options. No indication of a launch date has been provided, but interested customers can reserve a base model at $2,500 and the Launch Edition at $25,500 on the company’s website.