By the end of this week, 1,300 people who work for Lucid Motors will know they're going to lose their jobs. The luxury electric vehicle maker has notified (PDF) the US Securities and Exchange Commission in a filing that it's laying off approximately 18 percent of its workforce. Lucid said it's cutting jobs to reduce operating expenses "in response to evolving business needs and productivity improvements" and that it intends to complete this restructuring plan by the end of the second quarter this year.
Lucid CEO Peter Rawlinson told employees in a memo that the job cuts will affect both employees and contractors. In the US, nearly every division will be hit by reductions, and some executives are even included in the list of personnel the company is laying off. The EV-maker implemented other cost-cutting measures, such as reviewing its non-critical spending, after announcing its 2022 earnings results in February. But apparently, those measures weren't enough for the company to achieve its objectives.
While Lucid experienced a sharp increase in revenue year-over-year — it had only just started the Air sedan's production in late 2021 — it still fell short of analyst forecasts. In addition, although its production goal (14,000 EVs) for 2023 is double last year's figures, it's much lower than the 21,000 units experts had expected. As Reuters previously reported, price cuts by Tesla and the availability of affordable EVs from traditional automakers had lessened demand for vehicles from startups like Lucid. Rivian, another EV startup, is similarly affected and announced that it was going to reduce its workforce by six percent in February.
Lucid said in its filing that the layoffs will cost the company $24 million to $30 million, which will be spent on severance payments, company-paid health insurance and stock-based compensation for the affected workers. Despite its cost-cutting measures, Lucid still intends to expand globally and to continue developing more models, including the three-row Gravity electric SUV that it plans to release in 2024.