Peter Rawlinson, who engineered the Tesla Model S a decade ago, hopes he can make innovative lightning strike twice.
An electric luxury sedan he unveiled Wednesday as CEO and chief technology officer of California-based Lucid Motors Inc. improves on nearly every facet of the top-selling Tesla car that was introduced in 2012, the U.K. native says.
The Lucid Air vehicle will be manufactured south of Phoenix in a huge plant being built in Casa Grande.
“People ask me, how can you compete with Tesla?” Rawlinson told the Business Journal in a recent interview. “Well, of course we can compete. We created it. People say we can't do better. Of course we can. We can certainly do better than what we did 10 years ago.”
But Rawlinson says he aims to compete with luxury class cars like Mercedes, Porsche and Jaguar that sell for far more than the $139,000 to $169,000 his first models will cost early next year.
Analysts say that Rawlinson’s involvement in Tesla’s sedan and the engineering improvements Lucid has made give it a shot at succeeding where many, many others have failed.