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The debut electric vehicle from former Tesla engineer faces delay

Thanks coronavirus

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The first EV from Lucid Motors Inc., the car company setup by former Tesla chief engineer Peter Rawlinson, won’t be going ahead exactly as planned.

Due to uncertainty spurred on by the outbreak of the coronavirus, the Lucid Air EV is not entering production on schedule and is being put on hold until later in the year, Silicon Valley Business Journal reports.

[Read: Grab makes e-scooter and cab rides free for frontline coronavirus workers in the Philippines]

The company had planned to publicly unveil the vehicle at the Detroit Auto Show. However, the show was canceled late last week, as its venue is to become a Federal Emergency Management Administration building.

Despite the setback, Rawlinson appears confident. The company has over 1,000 employees and continues its growth trajectory he told Silicon Valley Business Journal.

The company‘s supply chain also remains committed and ready to start production, he added.

Rawlinson’s history with Tesla and the fact the Lucid Air is a battery electric vehicle puts it in close competition with vehicles like the Model 3. However, current development models of the Air are said to have about twice the power of the Tesla Model 3.

According to Rawlinson, the Lucid Air tries to compete with brands known for more luxurious offerings like BMW, Audi, and Mercedes.

Lucid isn’t the only car company to be affected by the outbreak of coronavirus.

In order to meet production deadlines amid supply chain problems, Tesla used old Autopilot hardware in its Chinese made Model 3s.

To support hospitals during the coronavirus outbreak, many automakers have pivoted to manufacturing ventilators and medical equipment.

Published March 31, 2020 — 13:51 UTC