Lordstown signs agreement with LG Energy Solution
Lordstown Motors plans to start production of its all-electric Endurance pickup truck in September this year. Lordstown has just signed a multi-year contract with LG Energy Solution to supply battery cells.
Lordstown has not given further details on the volume and value of the agreement with LG Energy Solution, the battery spin-off from LG Chem, saying only that the agreement will be “broadening Lordstown Motors’ high-quality, diverse battery cell supply chain that will power the Endurance for years to come“.
The Endurance was first unveiled in mid-2020. The electric pickup truck has its own e-motor at each wheel, produces 447 kW and will be offered at prices starting at 52,500 US dollars. In March, the US manufacturer plans to complete the first beta prototypes, which will be used for testing and sent to customers to gather their feedback. According to its own schedule, the US company has initiated the metal stamping and welding for the first 57 Endurance Beta prototypes and will finish these in March. These Beta prototypes will be used for validation testing, crash and engineering tests, while the company is sending some of these vehicles to initial customers for feedback. Lordstown says that the Endurance has already been given a 5-start crash test rating via software crash simulation.
Lordstown now says that the electric pickup will 1roll off the production line from September at Lordstown’s main plant in Ohio. Preparations are currently underway there to set up production lines for battery packs and wheel hub motors. At Lordstown Motors’ 6.2 million square foot Ohio headquarters construction continues on an 800,000 square foot renovation.
Lordstown Motors has also just announced that it will unveil an electric delivery van based on the Endurance platform in June 2021 and that it plans to put it into production in the second half of 2022. The US manufacturer says that the model will also be equipped with wheel hub motors to achieve all-wheel drive and low ground clearance and ^
have a “class-leading range.”About the price, Lordstown only says that this will be competitive in price with comparable internal combustion engine vans.” The van’s first use case, Lordstown says, will be an all-electric motorhome produced in partnership with Camping World.
The cooperation with Camping World could go further than this model. In addition to its own service centres, Lordstown is looking at “leveraging Camping World’s extensive presence and service expertise to ensure nationwide service coverage for all Lordstown vehicles”. So a distribution partnership between the two sides is on the horizon. Lordstown itself claims to currently employ 343 full-time staff, including 171 at its Ohio headquarters. By the end of the year, the company estimates that number should triple to more than 1,000 employees.
“We are hard at work in the factory preparing to begin Beta builds in the coming weeks,” sums up Lordstown founder and CEO Steve Burns. “With this step on the horizon, we remain on track to meet our September start-of-production timeline while continuing to see indicators of strong demand for an all-wheel drive, a full-size electric pickup truck with 250 miles of range from commercial, government and military fleets,” the CEO confirms.
The Endurance will be just in time for a flurry of activity to get zero-emission models on the market in the US after US President Biden pledged to electrify government fleets. Lordstown Motors now says that it has been added to the United States General Services Administration listing, which is the first step towards selling to government fleets. The company says it has started its outreach to state and local government entities, including the US Military and believe that these markets “represent a significant opportunity for the Endurance and follow-on products.”
Only a few months ago, Lordstown Motors made its debut on the US stock exchange Nasdaq using a merger. At that time (as of August), the company said it had more than 27,000 orders for the Endurance. However, Lordstown had already received around 6,000 pre-orders since the launch. The Endurance emerged from the now-discontinued W15 pickup project of Workhorse, a company also founded by Burns. Lordstown not only took over the pre-orders, but also some of the technology under licence.