Jon Fingas

Are you contemplating a Lucid Air, however fearful you may not outrun a Mannequin S Plaid in a drag race? That may not be an issue you probably have a large-enough checking account. Lucid has introduced a Sapphire badge dedicated to “ultra-high-performance” EVs. The primary mannequin within the line, the Lucid Air Sapphire, guarantees to outperform Tesla’s Plaid automobiles in no less than some situations — and never simply in a straight line.

The Air Sapphire facilities round a tri-motor system (one entrance, two rear) producing over 1,200HP, topping even the no-longer-available Dream Version. In tandem with higher cooling, the brand new powerplant reportedly delivers a 0-60MPH dash in beneath two seconds, 0-100MPH in lower than 4 seconds and a quarter-mile time under 9 seconds. You’ll be able to count on a high velocity above 200MPH. Whereas that is not assured to demolish a custom-made Mannequin S Plaid, that is additionally a factory-stock automobile that does not want a preconditioning interval (like Tesla’s Drag Strip Mode) to succeed in its full potential.

And sure, Lucid believes the Air Sapphire can deal with turns and twists. You’ll be able to count on a barely wider physique to accommodate new Aero Sapphire wheels with particular Michelin tires. The motors’ torque vectoring, in the meantime, guarantees each higher turn-in whereas upgrading stability in straightaways. You can even count on a stiffer suspension, stiffer bushings and customized tuning for every thing from the antilock brake system by to energy steering. Vary and different particulars are forthcoming.

Lucid Motors

Many of the inside modifications revolve round software program. Whereas there’s a new visible theme and “extremely bolstered” seating, the centerpiece is an up to date interface with extra performance-oriented options that embrace a devoted Sapphire Mode.

None of those optimizations come low-cost, nonetheless. Lucid will ask $249,000 for the limited-run Air Sapphire, with pre-orders within the US and Canada beginning August twenty third at 9AM Japanese. That makes the $179,000 Grand Touring trim look like a relative cut price, and even Porsche’s $187,400 Taycan Turbo S is extra inexpensive. On this class, although, bragging rights typically assist justify any premiums.

This may additionally characterize an vital technique swap for Lucid. The fledgling EV maker has needed to drastically cut its production targets in gentle of provide chain issues, and now expects to make not more than 7,000 automobiles in 2022 as an alternative of the initially deliberate 20,000. Sapphire will arrive too late to assist this yr, nevertheless it would possibly offset future monetary bother by rising Lucid’s revenue from the automobiles it ships.

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