Lucid Motors, the California-based firm bent on “creating the most captivating luxury electric vehicles,” has hired Peter Hochholdinger as its new vice president of manufacturing. Hochholdinger was the former vice president of production at Tesla, Inc. and was hired by Lucid about a week after he left Tesla.

Lucid said Hochholdinger, who has almost 30 years of experience in automotive manufacturing, will lead Lucid’s global manufacturing operations based at Lucid’s new EV plant in Casa Grande, Arizona. Hochholdinger will also lead the firm’s manufacturing engineering unit.

“We are delighted to welcome Peter to the Lucid team,” said Lucid CEO and CTO Peter Rawlinson. “Peter’s extensive experience and proven leadership in premium-vehicle manufacturing will prove invaluable as we continue our progress towards the launch of Lucid Air and future models.”

Rawlinson said that by joining Lucid, Hochholdinger will be empowered to create an industry-leading manufacturing process that will deliver the quality products demanded by the company’s customers.

For his part, Hochholdinger said he joins Lucid at an exciting time in the company’s history.

“I look forward to working with the world-class team to deliver Lucid’s incredible luxury electric vehicles in production,” he said.

Lucid has never been shy about its aim to be a real competitor to Tesla. It will benefit from the immense technical knowledge amassed by Hochholdinger, especially when it begins production of its first EV -- the Lucid Air -- in 2020.

In January 2019, Lucid received a $1 billion investment from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund to ensure the commercial launch of Lucid Air. The company said this massive investment from the Public Investment Fund (PIF) of Saudi Arabia is a major milestone on the path to the production of the Lucid Air. 

Lucid Air Lucid Air Photo: Lucid Motors

The investment will provide Lucid with the necessary funding to commercially launch Lucid Air. Lucid will use the Saudi funding to complete engineering development and testing of the Lucid Air; build its $700 million factory in Casa Grande, Arizona and manufacture Lucid Air.

At Tesla, Hochholdinger was responsible for the EV factory in Fremont, California; Tesla’s castings site in Lathrop, California, and its Tilburg production facility in The Netherlands.