As Lucid opens stores, it will take pop-ups to other cities

Jessica Thompson

NEWARK, Calif. — Lucid Motors, the direct-to-consumer electric vehicle startup, is expanding its “studio” store locations to major U.S. cities, including recent openings in Seattle and Denver. But there are still current and future reservation holders who are too far away to easily test drive the Air sedan and its new Grand Touring trim.

So the automaker is taking its retail experience on the road.

The Grand Tour is the EV maker’s national test drive program that seeks to replicate a showroom experience through pop-up locations, including one at its Silicon Valley headquarters here.

“The Grand Tour will give invited reservation holders time behind the wheel via a fleet of Lucid Air Grand Touring models,” Lucid said in an email to Automotive News. “The scalable setup mirrors our Studio experience.”

The Grand Touring version starts at $155,650 with shipping. The Air Performance, which is also in production this month, starts at $180,650, more than Lucid’s first offering, the Lucid Air Dream Edition, which starts at $170,500. Lucid raised prices on all Air trims this month to reflect higher costs, but orders made before June 1 were not affected.

As part of the Grand Tour setup, the automaker will offer displays showing interior material choices, technical details such as the vehicle’s compact motors and 516-mile battery, and partnerships with public charging provider Electrify America and audio firm Dolby.

The program officially kicked off in Long Beach, Calif., at the Electrify Expo this month. The next stops include Napa, Calif., and Las Vegas. Although Lucid has a permanent studio at its Newark headquarters, the pop-up store was rolled out last week as a demonstration.

Future mobile locations will be announced later, the automaker said, and include markets across the country where Lucid has yet to establish a physical presence. The pop-up tour runs through the fall.

Lucid, which has struggled to ramp up production of its first electric vehicle because of supply chain constraints, is building the Grand Touring trim of the executive sedan after finishing deliveries of the sold-out, limited-run Dream Edition that kicked off production last year.

Lucid requires only a refundable $1,000 deposit on the Air Grand Touring to make a reservation and be eligible for a test drive. The next two trims that will go into production are the Touring and the Pure. The Pure requires a lower $300 deposit to reflect its lower starting price of $89,050.

The automaker has said it has over 25,000 reservations for the different Air trims but only expects to build between 12,000 and 14,000 this year.

Data from Experian put Lucid new-vehicle registrations through the first four months of the year at just 582. Lucid will report sales through the first half in July or August as part of its second-quarter earnings report.

Last week, Lucid opened its first retail location in the Pacific Northwest, at University Village shopping center in Seattle, bringing the total number of studio and service locations in North America to 28, the company said in a press release.

“The response to Lucid in Washington state has been tremendous, which reflects the region’s unique embrace of both innovation and the environment,” said Zak Edson, Lucid vice president of sales and service.

In mid-June, Lucid also opened a store in Denver at Cherry Creek Shopping Center. Other stores have recently opened in Toronto and Boston. Lucid’s first European location opened in Munich last month, with other locations planned in the Netherlands, Norway and Switzerland this year, the company said.

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