Lucid Motors is continuing to struggle with its initial production ramp of its introductory EV, the Lucid Air. However, it is also having trouble keeping the high-ranking executives it hired and tasked with solving the issues that have kept the electric vehicle startup from reaching mass production.
Lucid Group has lost at least six high-ranking, manufacturing-focused executives in “recent weeks,” according to a new report from Business Insider. Struggling to ramp mass production of its electric vehicles, Lucid has lost the following members of its manufacturing team:
- Vice President of Global Manufacturing – Peter Hochholdinger
- Vice President of Programs – Ralph Jakobs
- Head of Arizona Operations – Mike Boike
- Head of New Production Introduction and Program Management – David Peel
- Senior Manager of Logistics Engineering – Chris Barber
- Director of Operational Excellence – Keith Champion
Champion and Peel have already acknowledged their departures on LinkedIn.
“As I fondly look back at the many accomplishments and achievements that I had the honor of being part of, such as the development of the Lucid Production System and all the exceptional programs implemented by the global Operational Excellence teams, I realize that what made Lucid so special were the many brilliant people I got to work with daily,” Champion said in a post.
“Bittersweet to be leaving this great team that I developed for Lucid’s New Product Introduction in Casa Grande, AZ,” Peel said, then stating he had joined Nikola Motor as the company’s Director of Advance Manufacturing Engineering.
The exact reasons for their departures is unknown. Lucid is overhauling its manufacturing processes to reach mass production, but it seems the executives who departed may have disagreed with the moves. People familiar with the matter who wished to remain anonymous said they were unsure of how the mixup would affect the company, which is scrambling to remain afloat after cutting its production forecast on two occasions this year.
Lucid plans to make between 6,000 and 7,000 electric vehicles this year, a far cry from the 20,000 units it expected to build at the beginning of 2022. In February, this figure was cut to between 12,000 and 14,000 vehicles.
“We’re overhauling our logistics processes and introducing a series of improvements to simplify the system and yet make it more efficient and robust,” CEO and CTO Peter Rawlinson said on the Q2 Earnings Call on August 3. Rawlinson also detailed that everything from improvements to line side supply, which would improve future production rates, can affect manufacturing forecasts. “Our guidance of 6,000 7,000 cars for the year, I believe, is a very balanced and a realistic guide for the future.”
Lucid brought warehouse and logistics operations on site, the report also stated. Lucid builds its vehicles at the AMP-1 Facility in Casa Grande, Arizona. Teslarati recently reported that Lucid plans to expand the plant, bringing a new wave of manufacturing buildings and other facilities to the campus.
Despite Lucid’s very-public manufacturing challenges, the company recently introduced another trim level of its Air sedan. Known as the Sapphire, Lucid plans for the vehicle to compete with the Tesla Model S Plaid, bringing forward a 1,200-horsepower, tri-motor powertrain capable of reaching 60 MPH from 0 in less than 2 seconds.
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