car company that announced plans in 2017 to build a manufacturing plant in Casa Grande announced Sept. 17 that the business is receiving $1 billion in funds to launch its first electric vehicle in 2020.

According to a Lucid Motors press release, “Lucid plans to use the funding to complete engineering development and testing of the Lucid Air, construct its factory in Casa Grande, Arizona, begin the global rollout of its retail strategy starting in North America, and enter production for the Lucid Air.”

Tim Kanavel, Economic Development Manager for Pinal County, said the county is extremely excited about this latest news.

“This infusion of cash will allow Lucid to get the project starter faster than what they first announced. In addition to the recent good news from Nikola, we’re looking at 4,000 new jobs for our county, all well-paying jobs in the high-tech industry.”

Nikola Motor Company, a hybrid truck manufacturer, recently announced they were building a million-square-foot facility in Coolidge, with the promise of 2,000 jobs.

Kanavel shared that about half of Pinal County’s workforce commutes out of the area for their jobs.

“With the jobs we are bringing into the county, we can retain the people who are commuting out of the area. Now, you can afford to work and live here,” said Kanavel. “Our priority one effort is going after jobs that are head of household type of positions. This increases demands for new homes and more retail opportunities.”

The $1 billion investment agreement was signed with the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (PIF).

“The convergence of new technologies is reshaping the automobile, but the benefits have yet to be truly realized. This is inhibiting the pace at which sustainable mobility and energy are adopted. At Lucid, we will demonstrate the full potential of the electric connected vehicle in order to push the industry forward”, said Peter Rawlinson, Chief Technology Officer of Lucid.

A spokesperson for PIF said: “By investing in the rapidly expanding electric vehicle market, PIF is gaining exposure to long-term growth opportunities, supporting innovation and technological development and driving revenue and sectoral diversification for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.” The spokesperson added: “PIF’s international investment strategy aims to strengthen PIF’s performance as an active contributor in the international economy, an investor in the industries of the future and the partner of choice for international investment opportunities. Our investment in Lucid is a strong example of these objectives.”