In 2018 the Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) invested more than $1 billion in luxury electric car maker Lucid Motors. As part of that deal, Lucid apparently promised to build an assembly plant in Saudi Arabia, something that until now has been undisclosed.
The revelation is important because of Lucid’s recent SPAC deal that would see it go public later this year. According to a report from the The Wall Street Journal, sources familiar with the matter say one prominent institutional investor has been made aware of the company’s commitment.
If Lucid follows through, it could be an expensive promise. Since the country is not optimized for vehicle manufacturing and many parts would need to be imported, the project could cost several hundred million dollars., potentially doubling what it would cost elsewhere.
Before Lucid can build a plant in Saudi Arabia, it needs to begin delivering cars out of its current facility in Casa Grande, Arizona. Originally hoping to begin deliveries this spring, the Lucid recently announced deliveries have been delayed until later in 2021.