Electric carmaker Lucid Group has inaugurated the first-ever car production facility in Saudi Arabia’s port city of Jeddah.
The facility, which is the automaker’s second Advanced Manufacturing Plant (AMP-2) and first international plant, will produce electric vehicles (EV) for Saudi Arabia and export to other markets.
The AMP-2 facility, located in King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC), will assemble the luxury electric sedan Lucid Air, with an initial capacity to produce 5,000 units a year.
“We are delighted to make history today in Saudi Arabia by opening the country’s first car manufacturing facility, which will produce our award-winning electric vehicles and support the country’s vision for a more sustainable and diversified economy,” said Peter Rawlinson, the CEO and CTO, Lucid Group.
“As Saudi charges toward its Vision 2030, our facility will pave the way for the country’s electric automotive industry and the expansion of the supply chain.”
The initial operation re-assembles Lucid Air vehicle ‘kits’ that are pre-manufactured at the company’s Casa Grande, Arizona manufacturing facility.
The site will be scaled up to complete build-unit production after the middle of the decade, with an additional annual capacity of 150,000 cars.
The company said the new facility received backing from the Ministry of Investment of Saudi Arabia, the Saudi Industrial Development Fund, and the KAEC.
It is expected to play a pivotal role in accelerating the kingdom’s economic diversification strategy while supporting the Saudi Green Initiative’s imperative to ensure that 30 per cent of new car sales in the country are electric by 2030.
The plant’s strategic location near Jeddah will also act as a catalyst to further grow and expand the newly established domestic supply chain, creating demand for local suppliers and fostering long-term growth.
AMP-2 will be a driving force for innovation and job creation, championing home-grown Saudi talent and providing expert skill development training.
Lucid expands global footprint
Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, which owns just over 60 per cent of Lucid, in May agreed to invest $1.8bn as part of the luxury EV maker’s private stock offering.
“AMP-2 in KAEC, in addition to our existing production facility in Arizona, gives us the ability to efficiently fulfil the recently signed agreement with Saudi Arabia to purchase up to 100,000 vehicles over a period of ten years,” said Faisal Sultan, vice president and managing director Middle East, Lucid Group.
The kingdom invested in Lucid in 2018 and steadily accumulated more shares until it held majority ownership when the automaker went public through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) in 2021.
The EV maker projected that the location of its first international manufacturing plant in Saudi Arabia may add up to $3.4bn in market value over 15 years.
Saudi Arabia unveiled its electric car brand, Ceer, in November 2022.
Ceer, a joint venture with Taiwan’s Foxconn, will design, manufacture and sell a range of vehicles, including sedans and sports utility vehicles, for consumers in the kingdom and the MENA region.