Lucid's calling the Tesla Model S out and claims the Air is the quickest production sedan.
It all started with Gran Turismo. From those early PlayStation days, Sean was drawn to anything with four wheels. Prior to joining the Roadshow team, he was a freelance contributor for Motor Authority, The Car Connection and Green Car Reports. As for what's in the garage, Sean owns a 2016 Chevrolet SS, and yes, it has Holden badges.
The Lucid Air is shaping up to be quite a car, and not just some far-off concept, either. The information the company continues to relay ahead of the car's debut is for the production car. So, how does a 9.9-second quarter-mile time sound? It sounds like the Air could rival the Dodge Challenger Demon on the drag strip -- or better yet, the Tesla Model S.
On Wednesday, the startup released more performance specs for its upcoming EV, and chief among them is the sub-10-second quarter-mile time. Not only did Lucid lay this benchmark down, it promises the Air will be able to repeat this kind of performance multiple times. In any measure, the Air won't be a slouch with 1,080 horsepower as its top spec. While Lucid staked its territory, we'd love to know more about the Tesla Model S the Air raced in the video above. It shows the Air dispatch a Model S pretty easily, and of course there are questions about the specs and tires used. At any rate, the 9.9-second time shows clearly. Not only is it impressive, it's clear the Model S likely has a true challenger.
Lucid credits its powertrain and its focused engineers for the pretty incredible specs. The 900-volt electric drive unit weighs just 163 pounds and fits up to three e-motors, each of which can spin to 20,000 rpm. Lucid's own motor winding technology helps in a big way to boost performance and reduce electrical losses. All the while, an "innovative cooling system" keeps heat away to ensure those repeat performances. An inverter, transmission and differential are all packed into the drive unit, too, which can apparently fit into a typical carry-on bag used for air travel. Mighty compact, indeed.
And there shouldn't be much to worry about when it comes to charging the Air. Lucid said its "Wunderbox" charging unit can add 300 miles in 20 minutes, or 20 miles in a minute, on a DC charger. We haven't heard anything about Lucid creating its own charging network, but it has partnered with Electrify America for future Air owners, so it won't be too tough to find chargers across the country. Plus, Lucid estimates the Air will return 517 miles on a single charge, based on independent testing. We'll have to wait for the EPA's final say, but that's a tremendous achievement, if it stands. Lucid's confident it will.