Lucid Motors Inc., the electric-car startup funded by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, promoted its chief technology officer to the top job following co-founder Sam Weng’s retirement as CEO.
Peter Rawlinson, who was chief engineer of the Model S when he worked for Tesla Inc., has long been the public face of Lucid, which plans to build electric sedans in 2020 at a factory in Arizona. A lack of funding delayed those efforts until Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund invested more than $1 billion in a deal closed earlier this month.
Lucid, based in Newark, Calif., plans to start producing versions of its debut model, the Air sedan, that will cost more than $100,000 and accelerate from zero to 60 miles per hour in 2.5 seconds. Rawlinson has said he expects the Air model to outperform Tesla’s Model S, which has a 335-mile range when fully charged.
“We will have a car with 400 miles of range. No one else is even close,” Rawlinson said in a phone interview.
In February, Rawlinson said Lucid was in talks to potentially share technology with other automakers, and that the company may plan an initial public offering of stock in a few years.