On the investment, the PIF said, “By investing in the rapidly expanding electric vehicle market, PIF is gaining exposure to long-term growth opportunities, supporting innovation and technological development and driving revenue and sectoral diversification for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
Saudi Arabia has been working to reduce its reliance on the oil industry and expand its economy into new sectors. An electric-car company is certainly one major way of accomplishing said goal.
With the funding, Lucid said it plans to carry out construction of a new factory in Casa Grande, Arizona, complete engineering and development of its first car, the Air electric sedan, finalize a retail strategy for North America, and put the Air into production sometime in 2020. The funding also comes after a critical time at the fledging electric-car company.
SEE ALSO: Tesla Trims Paint Color Options From Model 3
This past summer, Lucid was reportedly open to a sale. The company had previously secured $240 million to begin production of the Air electric car, but required $700 million to begin full-scale production. Lucid reportedly approached Ford about buying the company, but the U.S. automaker declined.
The PIF is also the same fund Tesla CEO Elon Musk spoke of when infamously announcing he’d “secured” funding to take the company private. Ultimately, Musk decided to keep Tesla public after talks between the PIF and other suitors, such as VW, fell apart.