Lucid CEO says its Air has hit efficiency of 5 miles per kWh and ‘no one else is even close’


Lucid CEO says its Air has hit efficiency of 5 miles per kWh and ‘no one else is even close’

During a recent webcast at the annual Evercore ISI Global Clean Energy & Transitions Summit, Lucid Motors CEO and CTO Peter Rawlinson shared some exciting news about the automaker and electric mobility in general. Earlier this week, a version of its flagship Lucid Air sedan delivered an efficiency ratio of 5 miles per kWh, which could soon translate to more affordable long-range models for all.

Lucid Motors remains a relatively young but exciting American automaker that still hasn’t quite found its proper niche in the EV market. However, if you know anything about the Lucid’s design and innovation philosophy, it’s easy to see it’s one of, if not the best, in developing in-house technologies, especially in terms of overall efficiency.

The company launched as a luxury brand with its flagship Air sedan – a model we have had the pleasure of testing in all its variants over the past three years, which continues to impress as new and refreshed variants emerge.

With an SUV called Gravity beginning production later this year and a new design codenamed “mid-size” in the works for late 2026 with its sights set on dethroning the ultra-popular Model 3 and Model Y EVs from Tesla, Lucid is hoping to transition from top-tier luxury models few can afford to a mass-market EV powerhouse with the same name recognition as companies like Tesla, Mercedes, and Volkswagen.

Through our various test drives of the Air sedans, one of the shining features of Lucid’s technology is its in-house motors, inverters, and battery packs, which combine to deliver the most efficient and, in many markets, the longest-range vehicles available today.

Company CEO and CTO Peter Rawlinson recently expressed the importance of such vertical development and production to compete in the growing EV market and deliver vehicles with better gross margins, which translates to lower MSRPs for prospective consumers.

It appears well on its way to that achievement, as Rawlinson shared that one of its Lucid models recently delivered a certified efficiency rating of 5 miles per kWh, easily the best in the world.

The 2024 Lucid Air Pure / Source: Scooter Doll

Lucid hits 5 mi/kWh efficiency milestone but targets 6 next

Speaking during the 3rd Annual Evercore ISI Global Clean Energy & Transitions Summit in New York City on June 12, 2024, Peter Rawlinson announced the efficiency milestone of 5 miles per kWh in a Lucid Air.

Rawlinson did not specifically state which model achieved the record rating, but the images shown during the presentation make it clear that it was the RWD version of the Lucid Air Pure – currently the automaker’s most affordable variant and a favorite of both myself and Lucid’s CEO.

The RWD Lucid Air Pure’s efficiency rating previously led the EV market with a certified rating of 4.74 mi/kWh, offering more evidence that this was, in fact, the model to hit the impressive five-mile mark. Rawlinson pointed out that even at the lower efficiency, the RAW Air Pure translates to a mere $28 per mile range, while some competitors are as high as $58 per mile.

It doesn’t take an economics major to understand that greater efficiency translates to smaller battery packs that still offer competitive range. Smaller packs (which are still the most expensive component of any EV build) mean better margins and lower MSRPs for consumers.

By delivering EVs that can offer five miles per kWh, Lucid believes it can take the market by storm and believes its technology is already miles (literally) ahead of its competitors. Per Rawlinson:

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of announcing to the world that we’ve hit the magic five miles per kilowatt-hour. No one else is even close. Not remotely close. Some of the competition is under 3 (miles/kWh).

That means that we can make a car with a significantly smaller battery pack with competitive range and that gives us a unique and profound commercial advantage as a company. I think this is a landmark in the evolution of the automobile, let alone electric cars, and it has profound consequences for mankind.

In speaking about Lucid’s follow-up, the Air, the Gravity SUV, Rawlinson people continuously ask him, “When can I buy one?” and expressed confidence that the company has hit a sweet spot in the market that will deliver American consumers precisely what they want. Gravity likely won’t be as efficient as the Air, but Lucid’s technology should put it right up there as a market leader.

Conversely, mid-size could arrive as the most efficient EV made to date. The Lucid CEO spoke about the future of EV efficiency, declaring miles/kWh as the new mpg that consumers will focus on when they decide the best vehicle for them. Furthermore, the goal is to surpass 5 miles per kWh. Per Rawlinson:

I think six miles per kilowatt-hour is the holy grail. That’s what we need to save the planet.

Exciting stuff all around as Lucid Motors remains an EV automaker to watch. We can’t wait to see what efficiency ratios will roll out to the Air and eventually Gravity. We have been assured an update on that progress is coming soon, and we will be sure to report back.

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