Could Lordstown Motors’ Future Look Brighter as it Starts Production of EV Trucks?

The last time many of us heard about Lordstown Motors, it likely wasn’t good news. It’s no secret that Lordstown has had a rocky start. But, finally, the company says it has begun commercial production of the Endurance all-electric pickup trucks in Ohio. The company now says up to 50 trucks will be delivered to customers by the end of the year.

The first Endurance trucks are now coming off the production line

The new Lordstown Endurance truck in white
Lordstown Endurance truck | Lordstown Motors

Lordstown says it expects to deliver approximately 50 trucks to customers in 2022 and the remainder of the first batch of 500 trucks in the first half of 2023. But there’s a caveat: that’s subject to raising sufficient capital. That’s great news from the company that has tried repeatedly to build trucks since it was founded in 2018. The $63,000 truck will only be available to fleet customers initially, and won’t be sold to consumers.

“We will continue to build at a slow rate as we address remaining part pedigree and part availability issues. We expect to increase the speed of production into November and December,” said Edward Hightower, Lordstown CEO and President in a news release. “Our homologation and certification processes are proceeding as planned.”

The trucks are getting certified

One of the biggest hurdles for a new manufacturer is certifying its vehicles with federal and some state authorities. In Lordstown’s case, federal crash testing has been completed. It has submitted its trucks for review to the EPA and the California Air Resources Board. Lordstown also said that it is adding test miles to its developmental vehicles and is completing software updates.

What is Lordstown Motors?

The company’s history, while short, is novel worthy. Lordstown is named for the former General Motors Lordstown, Ohio, assembly plant that the company bought from General Motors. It launched in 2018 with several high-profile backers, including GM, and then went public through a SPAC, with the promise of building thousands of all-wheel-drive pickups.

Since then, though, it has seen a rough go of it. It’s been through a few CEOs and has struggled to raise capital. GM then divested from Lordstown. It eventually sold the plant to Foxconn this year. Foxconn, which many know as a maker of iPhones and digital flat-panel TVs, should bring some stability to the firm. The plant is now called Foxconn EV Ohio.

What makes the Endurace truck different?

Lordstown Endurance truck in grey
Lordstown Endurance truck | Lordstown Motors

Almost every electric vehicle in production today uses a traditional axle hooked up to a motor to power the wheels. Some, like the Rivian R1T and the Cadillac Lyriq use two or even three motors to add even more power. However, the Endurace uses hub-mounted motors. With the wheel as the motor, the idea is to reduce the overall complexity of the truck, and it makes it easy to make four-wheel drive versions.

Lordstown is cash strapped

2021 Lordstown Endurance | Lordstown

According to Tech Crunch, the company disclosed losses of $81.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2021. In March, the company said it needed to raise another $250 million to build its first 500 trucks. That’s a far cry from the 32,000 trucks it was planning to make this year, but nobody ever said building an all-new EV car company is easy.  In its latest news release, the company said it will “Continue to explore capital raising alternatives.”

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