Electric car

2022 Lucid Air Grand Touring plays follow-the-leader

With 1,050 hp at my disposal, the one sounds I hear are the whirr of electrical motors, the occasional thrum of tires over tough pavement, and the drumbeat of my racing coronary heart as I attempt to maintain tempo with the Stig on the twisty Skyline Drive within the San Francisco hills. Yeah, that Stig, racer and former “High Gear” hotshoe Ben Collins. The prodigious energy of the 2022 Lucid Air Grand Touring Efficiency helps me sustain with blasts of acceleration between corners, and I’m studying that I can sustain within the corners as effectively.

I’m reluctant at first. Throwing a automobile that weighs greater than two and a half tons into a good nook could be a recipe for catastrophe, particularly on tires made for low rolling resistance. Nevertheless, with its low-set stance, the Air Grand Touring Efficiency feels serene. In every flip, the entrance finish appears notably effectively tied collectively because the nostril responds instantly to the quick-ratio 13:1 energy steering.

The Air simply delivers within the corners, and that builds my confidence. I can really feel the load shift as I enter every flip, and the physique lean with it, however then the automobile takes a set, the 245/35/R21 entrance and 265/35R21 Pirelli P Zero summer time tires dig in for traction, and the rattling factor simply carves a real line. No understeer, no oversteer, no bobbling, it simply goes the place I level it. With its full-size proportions, it might doubtless be rather a lot to deal with on a good autocross, however on mountain or canyon roads, it’s a champ.

Lucid doesn’t make use of quite a lot of fancy chassis expertise to attain these outcomes. The Air makes use of a double wishbone entrance suspension and a multi-link unbiased rear suspension with adaptive dampers in any respect 4 corners. No air springs, no energetic anti-roll bars, no rear-axle steering. Simply well-tuned variations of fundamental suspension geometry and rack-mounted electric-assist energy steering.

The 2022 Lucid Air rides an aluminum skateboard platform and makes use of a pair of electrical motors that may make as much as 670 hp.

The 2022 Lucid Air rides an aluminum skateboard platform and uses a pair of electric motors that can make up to 670 hp.

The 2022 Lucid Air rides an aluminum skateboard platform and makes use of a pair of electrical motors that may make as much as 670 hp.

The 2022 Lucid Air rides an aluminum skateboard platform and uses a pair of electric motors that can make up to 670 hp.

The 2022 Lucid Air rides an aluminum skateboard platform and makes use of a pair of electrical motors that may make as much as 670 hp.

The platform helps, too. The 2022 Lucid Air sits on a skateboard structure with 22 battery modules set low into the ground. Every battery module is inflexible in its personal proper, and so they all come collectively to make the ground a stiff structural component. Within the Efficiency model, they mix for 118 kwh of electrical power storage, whereas the usual Grand Touring has 112 kwh. That’s not usable area, both. Lucid makes use of the total functionality of its battery packs.

The battery additionally contributes considerably to the automobile’s 5,236-lb curb weight. Whereas that’s heavy for a sedan, it’s pretty gentle for an EV. The comparably sized Mercedes-Benz EQS 580 weighs virtually 5,900 lb with about half the facility. To realize a few of these weight financial savings, Lucid makes the physique from aluminum and makes use of trick engineering to create smaller, lighter powertrain parts. Comprised of a rotor, stator, inverter, and differential, every electrical motor weighs 163 lb, 40 lower than the motors within the Tesla Mannequin S.

Every motor may produce as much as 670 hp, and the Air Grand Touring and Grand Touring Efficiency have one on every axle. Within the Efficiency model, they’re tuned to provide 1,050 hp, 61 lower than the Air Dream Version that the corporate wished to maintain particular for its first 520 clients. It additionally makes 921 lb-ft of torque. The Grand Touring mannequin spins up “solely” 819 hp and 885 lb-ft.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring Performance makes 1,050 hp and can hit 60 mph in just 2.6 seconds.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring Efficiency makes 1,050 hp and might hit 60 mph in simply 2.6 seconds.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring Performance makes 1,050 hp and can hit 60 mph in just 2.6 seconds.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring Efficiency makes 1,050 hp and might hit 60 mph in simply 2.6 seconds.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring Performance makes 1,050 hp and can hit 60 mph in just 2.6 seconds.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring Efficiency makes 1,050 hp and might hit 60 mph in simply 2.6 seconds.

Each present a rush of foolish energy. It’s laborious to inform them aside as a result of flooring the throttle creates such violent acceleration in every. The distinction? Zero to 60 mph in 2.6 seconds within the Efficiency and three.0 seconds in the usual Grand Touring. Each can attain 168 mph, and the Grand Touring Efficiency can cowl the quarter mile in 10.1 seconds in comparison with 10.7 seconds for the GT. These are supercar numbers.

The Air’s energy is a part of a brand new surge of electrical energy pioneered by Tesla and adopted by Rivian, Rimac, and others. The four-figure horsepower is an order of magnitude larger than the already overpowered Hellcats, GT500s, AMGs, Ms which have taken the inner combustion engine to new highs.

In comparison with these automobiles, the Air’s model of electrical energy is each much less and extra thrilling. The bellow and grunt of churning pistons, which may be so intoxicating when tuned accurately, offers strategy to a faint whirr. Nevertheless, the immediacy of the facility and the relentlessness of the acceleration eclipse something with a gasoline engine exterior of a Bugatti or a handful of different automobiles from boutique exotics.

Full horsepower is just out there within the prime Dash mode, whereas Clean and Swift modes are restricted to a measly 784 hp. I’m chasing the Stig in Dash mode with the brake regeneration set to Excessive somewhat than customary. The mix permits for principally one-pedal driving that provides a component of finesse to the expertise. The loopy energy out there at something close to full throttle means I can go as quick as I dare from nook to nook. The Excessive regen applies 0.3 g of braking pressure after I let off the throttle, which lets me sluggish the automobile with out having to maneuver a foot to the brake pedal. It additionally lets me stability the automobile’s weight mid-corner with solely the throttle. I can add a little bit upkeep throttle after turn-in and earlier than the apex to take care of momentum or I can let off and use regen to supply path braking to maintain the nostril down and assist carve the flip. Honing that management can solely assist enhance the dealing with. 

The Lucid Air Grand Touring boasts agile handling to go with its prodigious power.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring boasts agile dealing with to go along with its prodigious energy.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring boasts agile handling to go with its prodigious power.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring boasts agile dealing with to go along with its prodigious energy.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring boasts agile handling to go with its prodigious power.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring boasts agile dealing with to go along with its prodigious energy.

After all, four-figure horsepower means I do want to make use of the friction brakes when heading into some sharper corners. Making use of the brake makes use of simply the discs and calipers, so there isn’t any awkward mix of braking varieties. Lucid outfits the automobile with large brakes—15.0-inch entrance rotors with 6-piston calipers and 14.8-inch rear rotors with 4-piston calipers—and so they do a superb job in on a regular basis driving, however I’d like extra chunk and urgency out of them when braking laborious from the excessive speeds the Air can so simply hit.

Even in Dash mode with the 21-inch wheels, the Air has a clean, supple trip. The dampers cycle by way of three ranges based mostly on drive mode, and so they all the time regulate damping pressure to fulfill the situations. The steering additionally provides weight based mostly on mode. 

After biking by way of the modes, I desire the heavier, extra secure steering weight and stiffer damping of Swift and Dash. Clean mode permits a little bit an excessive amount of bounding over bumps on the freeway, and Clean’s lighter steering weight could make it fidgety at larger speeds. 

Nevertheless, Clean is the mode of option to unlock the Air’s industry-leading effectivity.

With the usual 19s, the Air Grand Touring will get an EPA-rated vary of 516 miles, which interprets to an effectivity score of 4.6 miles per kwh. Select the elective 21s and people numbers drop to 469 miles and 4.1 mi/kwh. The figures for the Grand Touring Efficiency nonetheless outshine many of the competitors at 446 miles and three.8 mi/kwh.

After all, you’ll be able to’t attempt to match tempo with the Stig and obtain these numbers. Throughout my 85 miles within the Grand Touring Efficiency, I bought 2.5 mi/kwh. I then switched right into a Grand Touring and noticed that the earlier driver bought 3.6 mi/kwh over the identical distance, then went on to publish solely 2.4 mi/kwh over 36 miles of additionally spirited driving. Your mileage could differ, however make sure you go straightforward if you happen to don’t wish to waste electrons.

The Air is a pacesetter when it’s time to replenish these electrons, too. It makes use of a 900-plus-volt electrical structure that enables it to get well 300 miles in 21 minutes on a 350-kw DC quick charger at a fee of as much as 300 kw. It will possibly additionally cost on a 240-volt outlet at 9.6 kw or at 19.2 kw with a 100-amp Lucid house charging unit. As a plus, it presents bidirectional charging that enables it to cost different EVs.

The Lucid Air offers four California-themed interior designs, and high-end versions have a glass canopy roof

The Lucid Air presents 4 California-themed inside designs, and high-end variations have a glass cover roof

The Lucid Air offers four California-themed interior designs, and high-end versions have a glass canopy roof

The Lucid Air presents 4 California-themed inside designs, and high-end variations have a glass cover roof

The Lucid Air offers four California-themed interior designs, and high-end versions have a glass canopy roof

The Lucid Air presents 4 California-themed inside designs, and high-end variations have a glass cover roof

Lucid wraps the Air’s energy and effectivity in a cocoon of luxurious and expertise. At 195.9 inches lengthy with a 116.9-inch wheelbase, it’s a full-size sedan with plentiful room for folks and packages. A sharply raked roofline makes entry and exit a headbanger’s ball, and never the music type. Duck down sufficient, although, and also you enter a cabin with good head and leg room entrance and rear, and well-bolstered entrance seats. The rear seat has low seat bottoms, so thigh help suffers for consolation on longer journeys. An 18-pack module with 95 kwh—in upcoming Pure variations—will remove the modules from the rear ground to enhance rear seat consolation.

The trunk is deep and enormous. It has a middle passthrough for skis and presents 22.1 cubic ft of area, although it seems extra like a drawer than a trunk as a result of the rear glass slopes down towards the top of the automobile. A somewhat extensive and deep entrance trunk provides one other 10.0 cubic ft of cargo area to present the Air the space for storing of a hatchback.

The Lucid Air has 32.1 cubic feet of cargo space between its trunk and frunk.

The Lucid Air has 32.1 cubic ft of cargo area between its trunk and frunk.

The Lucid Air has 32.1 cubic feet of cargo space between its trunk and frunk.

The Lucid Air has 32.1 cubic ft of cargo area between its trunk and frunk.

The Lucid Air has 32.1 cubic feet of cargo space between its trunk and frunk.

The Lucid Air has 32.1 cubic ft of cargo area between its trunk and frunk.

A Silicon Valley-based firm, the Air embraces its California roots inside. Lucid presents 4 inside themes, all based mostly on the colours of California areas at a selected time of day. They’re known as Santa Cruz, Tahoe, Mojave, and Mojave PurLuxe. All of them include a mixture of leather-based, wooden, material, and artificial suede trim, apart from Mojave PurLuxe, which substitutes artificial leather-based for the actual factor. The colours work effectively collectively, and every sill plate has the title of the inside theme and the latitude and longitude coordinates of that space. Lucid additionally consists of its bear brand (chosen as a result of the bear is California’s state animal) within the cabin.

The inside expertise presents itself in a financial institution of screens. Up prime is the Lucid UX 34-inch Glass Cockpit that gives three screens, one to the left of the steering wheel for assorted car capabilities, a digital instrument cluster in entrance of the steering wheel, and a middle touchscreen for navigation and infotainment. Under it, a big vertical display screen rises with the middle stack to manage driving modes and kind by way of every kind of auto settings and information. The entire system may be up to date over the air, and Lucid is already engaged on an OTA replace that strikes the highest touchscreen’s house, navigation, leisure, and cellphone icons from the fitting facet of the display screen to the left the place they are going to be simpler to succeed in.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring and Grand Touring Efficiency include the identical gear. The one variations are the facility, worth, and the choice of 19- or 21-inch wheels on the Grand Touring whereas the Efficiency will get solely 21s.

They each have a glass cover from the windshield to the again of the roof—interrupted by a crossbar on the center. There are power-adjustable heated and cooled entrance seats with therapeutic massage, leather-based upholstery, a 21-speaker Surreal audio system, and soft-close doorways. Lucid additionally makes its DreamDrive Professional driver-assist system customary. It makes use of cameras, radar, and lidar to supply automated emergency braking, energetic lane management, blind-spot screens, adaptive cruise management, and even automated parking.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring can DC fast charge at up to 300 kw to replenish its class-leading 516-mile range.

The Lucid Air Grand Touring can DC quick cost at as much as 300 kw to replenish its class-leading 516-mile vary.

The 2023 Lucid Air Grand Touring prices $155,500 together with vacation spot, whereas the Grand Touring Efficiency runs $181,400. Like most automakers today these costs have been hiked even earlier than the automobiles hit the market, on this case 12-13%, in accordance with Lucid.

That’s some huge cash to spend on any automobile, however the Air Grand Touring and Grand Touring Efficiency make the case for these costs with their ungodly energy, leading edge expertise, roomy and splendid cabins, and industry-leading effectivity and vary. Heck, they’re even enjoyable decisions for chasing the Stig by way of the California hills.

Lucid supplied airfare, lodging, and entry to a previously nameless TV icon for Motor Authority to convey you this firsthand report.   

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