The steel framework for the Lucid Motors production facility already has risen over the southwest corner of Casa Grande, completed at the end of February.
“Utilities are on schedule, the steel structure, a key milestone is completion, and that’s on schedule for completion tomorrow, and in fact we’re going to have a little ceremony with our steelworkers tomorrow. And then we go into the concrete. So everything is on schedule right now,” Lucid Director of Manufacturing Mike Boike told Golden Corridor LIVING on Feb. 25.
The nearly 60-foot tall structure will house the three traditional units of an automobile factory: the general assembly shop, paint shop and body shop, he said. Other functions will be handled offsite.
Construction of the Lucid facility officially began with a “groundbuilding” ceremony at the site Dec. 4 and was attended by Gov. Doug Ducey and numerous other dignitaries. Since then, more than 600 workers have been putting in the groundwork and airwork on a facility projected to create 4,800 direct and indirect jobs in the next decade.
These construction workers are using prefabricated components to build the factory, expected to total 11.4 million pounds of steel and 67.4 million pounds of concrete by the time they’re done.
The company will then start production of the Lucid Air, a luxury electric sedan touted for being able to go more than 400 miles without needing a recharge, including autonomous driver software that can be updated over time as technology advances.
Company CEO Peter Rawlinson visited the site Feb. 8 so he could share details of the progress at a sneak preview “Love Is In the Air” event Feb. 13 for holders of the $1,000 reservations Lucid is taking for the cars. And on Feb. 24 the company announced a partnership with LG Chem, which will supply battery cells for standard versions of the Air through 2023.
Boike said the first 30 employees for its new factory are in training at the company headquarters in Norwalk, California, and will in turn help train the other workers brought on board throughout this year.
Eighty prototype vehicles are currently being produced in Norwalk as Lucid prepares for a “global reveal” of the Air in April, which will include final specifications, available configurations and pricing.
General applications to work at the Casa Grande site are available through the Careers section of www.lucidmotors.com, with more specific job descriptions to come later.
Boike said he is encouraged by the pace of progress at the factory site and that construction is on pace to meet the goal of turning out its first Airs before 2021 arrives.
“We’ll be done by the end of the year. The factory is going to be done by the end of the year,” he said.