Tesla Motors Inc success in the EV market has become the envy of just about every automaker in the world and many of them are going after a piece of the cake. Atieva is an EV startup that seems hell bent on fighting Tesla for market share. Atieva has undergone a name change and the firm is to be addressed as Lucid Motors going forward.
We have written extensively on how Atieva is setting up itself as a Tesla copycat. Earlier in July, the startup outfitted a van with its electric drivetrain and it challenged a Model S to a race that it seemingly won. Also earlier this month, Atieva unveiled its first sedan, an AWD EV called Atvus which bears too much semblance to the Model S. Atieva (sorry Lucid)’s new car, based on teaser images released by the company, looks like something that mimics the Tesla Roadster.
Atieva (Lucid) wants to Challenge Tesla Model S with a radical EV
Lucid Motors is out to challenge Tesla Motors Inc ‘s Model S but the firm has debunked rumors that its first car will be a clone of the Model S. If anything, Lucid’s first car will bear more semblances to the Roadster than to the Model S in terms of form factor. Peter Rawlinson, Lucid’s CTO is the former chief engineer behind the creation of Tesla’s Model S. Rawlinson has also worked at Lotus and Jaguar; hence, he is versed in the art of building cars.
We don’t know much about Lucid’s new car but it is obvious that it would sport a radical shape and size. The car will also have a radical battery technology that is optimized for a long range (about 400 miles) and quick charging. The startup is working on improving its battery technology to fast-charge daily and to maintain 80 percent of the original capacity after 1000 full-charge cycles.
The car will also be optimized with aerodynamics that uses a new vortex induction system. The headlights will be radical with 12,000 microbeams in small modules that can provide a 3D light field and deliver 50% more visible light.
Automobiles are due for a change
Rawlinson however believes that many things are wrong with Tesla Motors Model S and he is out to fix EV sedans with a new car from Lucid motors. Rawlinson believes that Elon Musk still stuck to the traditional form factor of cars running ICE even though the Model S has an electric drivetrain. He says, he intends to build an EV that breaks away from the traditional constraints of a hood and trunk as well as other features that will be redundant in an EV.
To help him build radical EV, Rawlinson has employed the expertise of Derek Jenkins, who designed the Mazda MX-5 Miata for Maxda. More interesting is the fact that Rawlinson left Tesla with many of the original minds behind the Model S. He has also leveraged his experience and network in the auto industry to bring on board designers and engineer in the EV industry.
Jenkins also agrees with Rawlinson that the automobile needs to be radical. In his words, “how can that not profoundly change the design of the automobile? That’s what nobody else has done to this point… The idea that I’m going to package this 100-year-old vertical radiator at the front of the car to tell people I have to work really hard to be high performance, this notion of the automobile, it will change, particularly from electrification.”