The new Lucid Gravity is a high-powered, long-range BMW iX rival
The new Lucid Gravity electric SUV, revealed this week in Los Angeles, will receive a limited-edition range-topping 'Dream' variant set to offer well over 440 miles of range.
The Gravity has been revealed in just one form so far, with the brand only publishing limited technical details, but it has confirmed a maximum range for the standard car of 440 miles.
Asked if the firm will launch a longer-range Dream edition, as it did with the Air saloon in 2021, company CEO Peter Rawlinson all but confirmed it's in the pipeline: "I won't be denying it. Am I that predictable?" he said.
The 2021 Lucid Air Dream edition is certified as the longest-range EV on sale in America, according to that country's EPA homologation cycle, capable of 520 miles between charges, courtesy of a 120kWh battery pack.
As a reference to that number, its build run was limited to 520 units, and Rawlinson has strongly suggested the same will be true for the longest-range Gravity.
"With Gravity, it will be over 440 miles," he said, referencing the headline range figure revealed at the SUV's unveiling. "I'm not saying a number yet, because other people will announce other cars."
"If we were to do, hypothetically, a Gravity Dream Edition, it might be limited to over 440 units...".
The Gravity's claimed 440-mile range is already set to make it one of the longest-legged SUVs on sale, so a significant increase would put a Dream Edition variant well clear of its rivals.
Notably, the Air Dream Edition also brought a significant power boost to 1111bhp, to give the saloon a 0-62mph time of just 2.5 seconds, so it's likely that the similarly conceived top-rung Gravity will be one of the fastest SUVs ever produced.
Rawlinson stopped short of revealing when Lucid will reveal the Gravity Dream Edition, but the Air Dream Edition was detailed only two months after the standard car, in 2020.
Even as standard, the new seven-seater claims "sports car performance", with a 3.5sec 0-62mph time, courtesy of being equipped with "the most power-dense EV motors in production globally". Yet it's also able to carry more than 700kg onboard and tow loads of nearly three tonnes.
Chief engineer Eric Bach referred to the Gravity as "an environmentally friendly, versatile electric vehicle with the spirit of a supercar".
Like the Air, it comes with 900V charging hardware, which means 200 miles can be theoretically added in as little as 15 minutes - making it one of the fastest-charging production cars in the world.
But, crucially, it is not based on the same platform as its saloon sibling, because "that would have been an unacceptable compromise", as CEO Peter Rawlinson put it. It has been designed from the ground up as a "thoroughbred SUV" with an emphasis on both on-road performance and off-road functionality.
Lucid claims a maximum range of more than 440 miles from a circa-120kWh battery that is "a little more than half the size" of some rivals', pointing to an average power consumption figure of 3.6mpkWh - equivalent to some much smaller crossovers, saloons and even hatchbacks.
Pivotal to achieving this efficiency figure are the low drag coefficient of 0.24Cd that's achieved by the slippery, relatively low-slung silhouette, and the low energy consumption of Lucid's own 'miniaturised' EV powertrain.
Rawlinson said that boosting driving range by "cramming in as many batteries as possible" is a "horrible, low-tech solution". Lucid refers to this practice as "dumb range".
Revealing the Gravity at the Los Angeles motor show, Rawlinson hailed it as a showcase of how customers can travel "farther with less batteries and therefore using less precious energy", pointing to the resultant lower demand on the EV charging infrastructure and, as a by-product, the enhanced vehicle dynamics.
"Customers will find an unprecedented combination of space and manoeuvrability, luxury and versatility, all seamlessly integrated into one remarkable vehicle with the driving experience and range of a true Lucid," he said.
And, while the firm did not go so far as to confirm approach and departure angles or ground clearance figures, the SUV's 'zero gravity' air suspension system is said to provide the "bandwidth for the on- and off-road needs" of its drivers.
Enhancing practicality was a core focus, too: the middle and rear rows of seats fold completely flat to open up a cavernous 3171-litre load bay, the front seatbacks house folding tables so passengers can work on the move and there's a "substantial" secondary boot at the front.
The dashboard is dominated by an expansive 34in curved OLED display, equipped with Lucid's easy-access Pilot Panel for core functions, and a separate portrait-oriented screen on the centre console. Lucid acknowledges that such an expansive digital interface can be overwhelming on the move, and so has equipped the Gravity with a 'Detox mode' which shuts down two of the three screens and shows the driver only the most important driving information.
The California-based firm has still yet to confirm plans for a UK launch (for the Air or Gravity) but said the new SUV will hit the market in the US at sub-$80,000 (£64,500) late next year.