"From Model S To Lucid Air: A Conversation With Peter Rawlinson of Lucid Motors."
Quote>"Update me on the car, now.
Rawlinson: What we've got running today is entirely different from the Alpha car we showed you in 2016. Completely different. It looks deceptively the same; I'd say its design has matured like a fine wine. But the powertrain is two generations different.
In the Alpha fleet, we ran induction motors with a 400-volt architecture. Now we are using permanent-magnets motors at over 900 volts, with our own MOSFET inverter system, which is just state-of-the-art.
So both motors are permanent-magnet now? I know those are more efficient, but are you decouple one of them while cruising?
Rawlinson: The conventional wisdom is that at light load, you either mechanically decouple one of the permanent-magnet motors to avoid cogging losses, or you run a permanent-magnet front and an induction one in the rear [which can just be turned off, as it doesn't need a clutch]. At light load, you effectively have front-wheel drive. But our losses are a step-change lower than anyone else, so we can use permanent-magnet motors front and rear.
We can use one, two, or three of our motors, so the Air could have 600 hp, 1,200 hp, or 1,800 hp. Currently, we have 1,100 hp at the battery pack and 1,000 hp from the two motors.
1,800 hp? Is that a three-motor configuration?
Rawlinson: It's ALWAYS been part of our plan, and that's a scoop for you, Kim. Meanwhile, since those Alpha cars, the battery has actually gotten smaller in terms of capacity, down from the original 130 kW-hr. You might say, hey that's a bad thing, but we've gained so much in efficiency, we can save some weight. Anyone can add dumb range."
That's the thing about EX Jaguar and Lotus guy, straightforward and no bullshit particularly the engineers, like him! I've high hopes for delivery of the project forthwith.