Faraday Future is planning to restart construction of its proposed factory in the Apex Industrial Park in North Las Vegas, but scaled back from its original size. “It’s a 650,000-square foot mini-plant that’s going to be complete about August, end of August,” said Dr. Qiong Liu, North Las Vegas city manager.
When Las Vegas Now spoke with Dag Reckhorn, vice president of global manufacturing for Faraday Future at the CES show in January, he said everything was still on schedule for cars to start rolling off the assembly line “sometime in 2018.” Originally, the factory was scheduled to be 3 million square feet in size but financial issues involving principal investor Jia Yueting brought construction to a halt in October amid charges that the AECOM, the principal contractor, had not been paid on time and in full for its site preparation work.
City manager Liu confirms that AECOM has now paid for expedited building permits so it can begin work on the smaller factory. The city itself has embarked on a series of infrastructure improvements to bring water, sewer, and road upgrades to the Apex Industrial Park. Some of that work is being aided by funds from the state of Nevada.
“We’re not really hedging bets, we’re looking for a method to put the infrastructure in at Apex, because it’s critical for more than just Faraday, in the event that Faraday doesn’t move forward,” said Steve Hill, director of the office of economic development for the state. Nevada has agreed to a package of tax incentives for Faraday Future, assuming certain production and hiring goals are met. State treasurer Dan Schwartz told the press in December that he had given up on the idea that the company would ever commence manufacturing it the state.
“Personally I think it’s over.” Schwartz tells KSNV in Las Vegas. “I think it was over pretty much before it began.” adding, “I think he’s out of money.” Schwartz says of Yueting . “Could he get more money? My sources in China say the government there isn’t financing him. I wonder where and how they’re going to continue this project.”
Faraday Future reportedly received 64,000 “reservations” for the $200k+ FF 91, following its CES unveiling. Perhaps that expression of interest — no money was required in order to reserve a car — has convinced some investors to put up more money to keep the company going. Tesla has certainly been remarkably successful starting out small and building its way into the nascent industry powerhouse it has become today. Perhaps Faraday Future can emulate that success path.
With more than a 1,000 horsepower on tap and a projected range approaching 400 miles helped by a 130 kWh, the FF 91 may find a niche in the market, albeit for affluent buyers. At the end of the day, we’re glad to see that Faraday Future’s dream still has a pulse, no matter how faint.