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Lordstown Motors and Lucid Motors update | Autoblog Podcast #684

In this episode of the Autoblog Podcast, Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore is joined by Consumer Editor Jeremy Korzeniewski and and Yahoo Finance Senior Producer/Reporter Pras Subramanian. Jeremy just visited the Lordstown Motors factory in Ohio, and reports back from that amidst turmoil within the company. Our hosts also talk about another EV startup, Lucid Motors. Pras reviews the Bugatti Chiron Pur Sport. Jeremy opines that despite the shift to electrification, now is the time to enjoy the gas-powered car of your dreams. Finally, they reach into the Autoblog mailbag for an update on a previous Spend My Money segment.

Send us your questions for the Mailbag and Spend My Money at: Podcast@Autoblog.com.

Video Transcript

NARRATOR: This week's episode of "The Autoblog Podcast" is brought to you by "The Autoblog Daily Digest." It's a great way to stay updated with what's happening in the world of cars in just two or three minutes every day. Ask your smart speaker for the Autoblog Daily Digest to stay up to speed with the latest car news, or subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.

[ROCK MUSIC PLAYING]

GREG MIGLIORE: Welcome back to "The Autoblog Podcast." I'm Greg Migliore. Joining me today on the show is senior editor for all things consumer, Jeremy Korzeniewski. How are you doing, man?

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: I am present and accounted for. Thank you for asking.

GREG MIGLIORE: You have survived the buffet line and the free truck rides at the Lordstown Motors down in Northeast Ohio near the Pennsylvania border?

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Free truck right, yes. No buffet line. They had little boxed turkey sandwiches. And I did enjoy one of those.

GREG MIGLIORE: That's kind of cool. That's kind of cool. And honestly, whenever I like kind of dig into Lordstown, and it used to be the Chevy Cruze factory, it almost just seems like a Bruce Springsteen song about like manufacturing, Rust Belt, the plant evolving, so we'll see.

Although, I believe the song I'm referencing is actually Youngstown, not Lordstown. I digress. Also on the phone is our friend from Yahoo Finance, Pras Subramanian. How are you, man?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: I'm good, man. I'm good. Just trying to stay cool out here. And New York City's kind of sweltering.

GREG MIGLIORE: 64 degrees and overcast here in Michigan, not quite sure why. We have a rather nice summer day with echoes of fall. So I don't know what to tell you. It's pretty wild.

So we'll get right into all of the EV stuff. And then Pras, you drove something that is pretty awesome. This is the Bugatti Chiron Pur Sport.

This, I believe, is the car that's very quick, but it doesn't have quite the top speed of some of the other Chirons, if you will. Like it matters, if you will. It's like 300 miles an hour versus 215 or 217 miles an hour, something like that.

So I'm not sure I've ever driven a Bugatti as I think about it. So I can't wait to talk to you about that one. Real quick, just what did you do with the Bugatti? And then we'll get more into it later.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: You know, as one does, we went to Greenwich, Connecticut to test the car, so we were up there in a very bucolic setting, and took it on the roads, you know, like what you do with a $4 million car, right, is go and hit the streets.

GREG MIGLIORE: Whenever I have like a very expensive car, like a Bentley or an Aston Martin, I like to do a task. This always happens by coincidence. I don't schedule this, but I like to do something that I just like-- like a grungy job, like unplug a toilet, or like, you know, pull out these like crazy mushrooms that grow just on my lawn or something. I don't know why I do this. It's just this, I don't know, psychological, you know, disconnect, dissonance, I don't know.

But it is kind of fun to have like a Bugatti or a Bentley in your driveway, and then you're like covered in dirt as you're like going through your garden, and people are kind of looking at you like, OK, what's going on there? Anyways, I can't wait to hear about the Bugatti.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Let me tell you, 4 million bucks buys a nice house. Let me tell you, man, you know?

GREG MIGLIORE: I believe that. I believe that. Even in Greenwich, Connecticut, you can probably get a lot of house for 4 million bucks. So we're going to talk about Lordstown. We're talking about Lucid. Pras visited their showroom in-- where is it exactly? It's somewhere in New York?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Yeah, the Meatpacking District in New York City in Lower Manhattan.

GREG MIGLIORE: Cool. That's where-- back when the New York Auto Show was a thing. And it will be again in a couple of months. All kinds of automaker reveals and stuff going on there. I feel like I went to a couple of Cadillac and maybe a Fisker reveal over there, which was-- both were pretty fun.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Speaking of Fisker, how about Lordstown?

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. I mean, actually, that's like the perfect fade in here. Real quick, we are going to spend some money, but we have a good update. We'll talk about Jeremy's column, Fisker, Lordstown. Go, Jeremy.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Well, no, I just-- I say that because there's some-- some cross thought between Fisker and Lordstown. You know, Fisker is one of those kind of early on the cusp of the electric revolution automakers. They bought a factory, just like Lordstown bought a factory, so they're not starting from square one there.

They got to a point where they built vehicles down in assembly line. And Lordstown's knocking on that door right now. It didn't go well for Fisker. The question is, how is it going to go for Lordstown?

I had an interesting visit to their factory two days ago. I show up. I was promised that I was going to get a question and answer time with, you know, company chair people with engineers that were working on the car.

And I was really looking forward to that. I didn't get that when I showed up. I did get some interesting background information, got to see where they're at in their plant, you know, got to see their engineering prototypes, their betas, even got to ride in them.

But after I got home, I was thinking-- you know, I went with one major question in mind, what are the chances that they're actually going to pull through and get to a point of production? I didn't really get a solid satisfying answer to that question. But I did leave with, you know, a thousand small questions about the actual product.

And, you know, a little foreshadowing here, I have arranged with their PR person to follow up with some of the engineers. So I'm hoping to get a lot of these questions answered. But as of right now, that big question remains, what are the chances that they're actually going to get to a point where they're pumping these trucks out by the thousands?

I mean, I'm reminded of that scene-- you guys probably remember the movie "Dumb and Dumber," where, you know, 1 in 1,000, 1 in 100, whatever, more like one in a million. So you're telling me there's a chance? You know, there's a chance that Lordstown is going to hit all of their milestones, and goals, and go into at least small-scale production before the end of 2021. That's what they're saying. That's what they're hoping.

I wrote this piece-- and you can read it on "Autoblog." It went live yesterday. It went live on Tuesday the 22nd. The headline of the story is that "The potential is obvious, but so are the obstacles." That sums it up pretty well.

They've got a product. I rode in it. It's a legitimate vehicle that rides and drives on its own. Some things seem to be really far-- their batteries, their electric motors, even their infotainment system. Other things, fit and finish, interior especially, and even the assembly line are incomplete.

And they don't even have a motor. They don't even have the ability to send motors down their assembly line right now. They're still waiting for, gosh, I think it was like Malaysia or something like that. I'd have to look it back up. But they're still waiting for their assembly line components to be delivered so they can set it up. They've got this huge factory floor, freshly done, waiting for it, but it's not there yet.

So what are the chances they're actually going to go into any sort of serious production by the end of 2021? More like one in a million to quote-- to quote-- to quote "Dumb and Dumber." That doesn't mean that they don't have potential to surprise everyone, myself included. That doesn't mean they don't have the potential to be just, you know, maybe three to six months behind.

And, you know, in the automotive terms for an electric vehicle startup, being three to six months behind doesn't sound that bad when you're looking at, you know, Elon Musk telling people that, you know, Tesla Roadster's going to be out in whatever year, the Tesla Semi is coming up. The Cybertruck they've got, you know, hundreds of thousands of orders for. When is it actually going to be delivered? On those terms, maybe they'll surprise us all and, you know, actually sell some of these vehicles.

But, yeah, the state of the truck, as it currently sits, is unfinished. It-- especially on the interior, there were, you know, plastic moldings that you could tell we're in a very early state of finishing, different colors that had been spray painted to look like they matched but didn't, no interior weatherstripping anywhere to be found. It was a really bad sign when I crawled in the truck that I took a ride in and the headrest was installed backwards. And I pulled it out and fix it for him, you know, so the next journalist or investor that got in wasn't met with that glaring deficiency.

So, I mean, in some ways, they seem totally ready to tell a great story. When we got there, they had their factories all set up. They had like a procession of golf carts all set up for all of us. They have engineers with a great deal of experience.

They had-- they had a plant manager that used to be the plant manager when it was a GM. They brought him back. I mean, they've got all the pieces in place to actually build these things, except best I can tell, with the exception of the proper financing.

And maybe that's where Pras can lend some insight here. I don't have any idea like what are the chances that they're going to make the funding-- or get the funding, close it that they need. But I think that's what this really hinges on. Their ability to produce this vehicle in the thousands really depends on whether they can get the money they need to do so.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: You know, Jeremy-- Greg, I hope you don't mind me jumping in here.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. Yeah.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: You know, I think that's really informative, actually, Jeremy, this getting the view from the floor and inside the actual Endurance pickup because, you know, on the Wall Street side of things, the financial side of things, you know, we're kind of grappling with this-- yesterday the company talking about how they're evaluating strategic partners, you know?

This comes after a week ago when they said they may not have the ability to go on as a going concern because they're running out of money. They had something like 200 million-plus in cash and cash equivalents on the books. And they think that that might run out by the end of the year if they don't have enough funding to actually go ahead and make the Endurance.

This is following this insane back and forth about, do they have firm orders or do they not have firm orders, the CEO is gone, the CFO's gone. New president says, we have firm orders. And they have to reevaluate-- we had to re-backtrack and say, actually, those aren't firm.

If you're someone investing in the company, this is just a red flag after red flag. And this is sort of the narrative now that's going on here is, how do you own this company for the long term without any kind of huge partner to come in to save them?

And I'm just kind of curious, and guys probably know more about what I do, but, you know, this truck with the in-hub motors, and you're saying that the motors are coming in from Malaysia or wherever, they don't even have them on the floor, I mean, this may be even more of a bearish case with the company from my point of view, not to mention an ICC investigation into these preorders.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. And the thing about the motors is they're building the motors on site. They're not shipping in the motors. They don't have the line equipment to actually put them together like, you know, down the line. They've got people that are like building them by hand right now.

There's no way they're going to-- it's four Motors per vehicle. There's no way that they're going to hand assemble four motors per vehicle and, you know, send 10,000 out in a month. It's absolutely not going to happen. That's ludicrous to think that it can.

And they don't-- to be fair, they're not saying that that's what they're going to do. They're saying they're going to get the factory parts, the robots, and all of that, to build the line so that they can be, you know, assembled in the way that they need to hit scale before the end of the year is what they're saying. The question is, you know, what's the likelihood of that actually happening?

And, you know, I totally-- you know, I'm not going to comment on their financial situation. That's so far outside my wheelhouse. I can, however, comment on their product. And I've got a great deal of experience looking at assembly plants as well.

And going through the assembly plant, it's a great facility. It's-- I'm not going to say that it's state-of-the-art or cutting edge, but it is absolutely everything that they need. They're not going to be-- you know, they're not going to find themselves in a Tesla situation where they're building tents to finish their vehicle in. They've got, you know, I don't even know how many million square feet, like 6 million square feet of space in their plant under roof, wide open.

They basically stole the plant from General Motors. Stole, that's not the right word. General Motors gifted it to them. They charge them $20 million, but then gave them more than that in assistance and invested in the company.

And there's-- I don't remember, there's hundreds of robots inside the plant. Each one of those robots is worth more than the $20 million that they gave General Motors to get the plant. So they started off in a great spot.

And I don't know if this matters to investors or not, because it's not my wheelhouse, but, you know, does it make sense to invest in Lordstown Motors just based on their assets alone? I don't know the answer to that question. You know, they're sitting on this goldmine of a plant.

And I also don't know their deal with General Motors. Like is General Motors going to stop them from getting Chinese investment? Is General-- because GM did that with Saab, if you remember.

When Saab was sold to the group that ran Spyker, and then another Chinese company came in and wanted to, you know, bail that out and keep it going, GM said no because they had a hand in the factory and in the intellectual property. And they weren't willing to let that go over to new ownership. Is that a possibility at Lordstown? I mean, heck, I don't know. But-- and what it means for their ability to secure investment, I have no idea.

But I was actually pleased with the product. It's completely unfinished. They're in what they call a beta 2 stage with the Endurance truck.

But it works. They took us for rides in it. We ran 0 to 45s, we ran slaloms, we ran lane changes, the same basic battery chassis and motors. They've gotten a military prototype. And what does that military prototype mean for investment? Again, I don't know. But I took a ride in the military vehicle.

And we jumped it. We went over whoops, we, you know, powered slid through dirt, we forded 30 inches of water with their production spec motors and batteries. So, you know, I feel like that bodes well for the actual product itself.

So, I mean, I'm hopeful that it works out for them. I don't think there's much likelihood that you're going to see these things, you know, en masse rolling out of the factory before the end of 2021 is over, like they're hoping for. But, you know, I really hope it works out for them.

GREG MIGLIORE: It's interesting because they went public through like an SPAC, if you will. So they sort of, kind of moved quicker than you would through a traditional IPO. And that could be a good thing because it can get you to the market quicker, you can get money you need quicker.

But it also means you're out there, you know? The bright lights are on you quicker. And, you know, I'd say the case of Lordstown, it doesn't seem like that has been in their favor, you know? And in some ways I would say, like just looking at your reporting Jeremy and then just all of the events that have like led up to it, some of it was bad luck undoubtedly.

But it also feels a little bit like a little bit desperate, if you will. Like-- I mean, I can't imagine any other company having a change at the top of their leadership structure and still going through with having depressed investors come through. I guess canceling it would probably have been a worse look. You know, at that point, flights are booked and like people are already going. But, you know, and that's a little bit of bad timing, bad luck.

And to go back to like the original set up for this segment even, we talk about how Fisker back in like, you know, the mid-to-early like 2000s, 2010s, they were like this close to making it. They were a legit rival to Tesla in like 2008. Many people thought the Karma was better looking than-- I guess it was the Model S back then, you know? And for a while, Tesla had the Roadster, and we were waiting on the rest of their portfolio.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Right.

GREG MIGLIORE: Henrik Fisker had the pedigree as a, you know, Aston Martin, BMW designer. And then, you know, they ran into some bad luck. They had some issues with their product. They ran out of money. And then, of course, you know, Fisker is back now in like a new like-- you know, they've been-- this new version of Fisker is back 10 years later.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Chinese ownership.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. And it's interesting, too, you mentioned General Motors is sort of like the entity behind the curtain here. I think there was a lot of reasons that they were involved and still involved. Part of that is is they had this, you know, plant in middle America that made sedans.

And they didn't need it any more because people aren't really buying the Chevy Cruze. And it was too expensive to retool it and use it to build other things. A lot of different like political headwinds there. They had issues with the UAW, all sorts of things.

In hindsight, I wouldn't be surprised if they could do it over again if they would say privately, man, we should have built one of these new SUVs we're building somewhere else and stuck it there, you know, bit the bullet, retooled it, and then, boom, you're building like a small crossover SUV or an electric vehicle in Ohio. And that would be-- would have been much better for like the political headwinds.

And they wouldn't even be a part of this because my take is GM does not need to deal with Lordstown Motors. They're working on an electric Silverado, you know? They're talking about electrifying the entire Cadillac line. To me even having, it's either 10% or 20% stake, you know, in this essentially startup, like, they don't need that, you know? What are they doing, you now?

And I feel like, you know, this plant, in particular, was-- you know, it became a bit of, you know, a political football, you know? It was a subject of a-- a really interesting "New York Times" documentary back when they had that like weekly show on Sunday nights on FX I think it was. And it was really interesting. You know, they interview Mary Barra. And it was almost like an ethical thing.

And it's interesting because this is only a GM thing. Even Ford, and now Stellantis, never get caught up in this. But there's still this idea of like General Motors closing a plant. We saw a little bit of this when they closed the Janesville plant up in Wisconsin, where it was just like, you know, they can't do this, you know? And there was so much push back. So anyways, I think that's kind of why they're still involved, whether they want to be or not.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. You know, it's-- I like how delicately you're, you know, toeing the political line here because they're-- I mean, I think part of what they got caught up in was the politics of it, like they got such pressure, you know, from the Trump administration not to close the plant. And, you know, I think part of that is because in 2016 when Trump was running for president, he, you know, visited the area and promised those people that they were going to keep their jobs, and, you know, that, you know, he would make sure that they would remain gainfully employed.

That being the case, can you imagine the pressure that General Motors was under from the administration at the time to not close that factory like they announced that they were going to? So, yeah, I mean, to politely say political headwinds had something to do with it, I think it probably had a lot to do with it.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: And do they want to be in this position they're in right now? I mean, I don't know. I don't know what their thoughts are on their investment, you know, the sweetheart of a deal they gave Lordstown for the plant.

And, you know, the other thing is there's not a lot of-- there's not a lot of organizations in the world that are knocking on the door to buy a plant, you know, in eastern Ohio, northeast Ohio, you know? I mean, people are building gigafactories for batteries all over the place.

But, I mean, your market of potential buyers to sell an automotive plant that you don't want, you know, the political play of closing down, it's pretty small. So when Lordstown came knocking and said, you like, hey, we're willing to take that off your hands, they might have that as a great opportunity, actually. I don't know.

GREG MIGLIORE: I see your point there. And I think it was also an elegant solution for General Motors to kind of like, you know, evacuate. And then they can fully evacuate maybe later, however they want to, like, you know, make their full exit strategy.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: It goes to your point. I remember at the start of like the Great Recession 10 years ago, all these car factories were closing.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Right.

GREG MIGLIORE: There was no market for them. Like they're enormous factories built like-- like the most recent ones were built in like the '50s, you know? I mean, like what do you do with a factory that big? So, you know, yeah, if you could sort of unload that factory, give it to somebody else, you know, it's a lot more politically, you know, palatable, if you will because the people of the area aren't like angry at GM at that point, you know?

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Right. And not only that, like no one wants to see thousands of jobs lost, especially in an area that is, you know, already depressed on that front. So, you know, if for no other reason-- and I liked the product. I'd like to see their product make it, you know, into people's garages.

But, you know, even aside from that, I hope that they're a success and can hire a whole bunch of people, employ them, pay them good wages to build these things. And I hope there's more competition for the likes of, you know, the Ford Lightning and, you know, the Hummer electric truck.

And, I mean, even Rivian, even if it's smaller, you know, I hope that there's competition out there in the electric truck front to give people more choices and, you know, to-- competition drives-- you know, drives innovation. So hopefully this all works out.

GREG MIGLIORE: So speaking of competition and innovation, another electric vehicle maker that's in a little bit of a better place, it's a bit of a different business case. It's a high-powered electric sedan, very expensive. They've been around. They've actually been around for almost a decade at this point.

But they sort of kind of fade in and out of the public consciousness, which is probably a good thing, actually. You don't really want to be a flash point, you know, with the way things are going these days. Anyways, Pras got to look at their studio in the Meatpacking District of New York. And you got to ride in the car, right?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Yeah, yeah. So, you know, a few things. You know, they announced-- in addition to opening that New York-- New York studio they call the showroom, that's going to happen this Saturday, they talked about hitting a milestone with preorders. They had 10,000 paid reservations for the Lucid Air.

And they're also completing the preproduction builds that are coming off the line. So the car that I drove in actually was a-- well, I rode in it, but it was a car that actually came off their line, the preproduction build, not built in their, you know, HQ in Silicon Valley. So the new Case Grande factory is kind of almost there.

But, you know, it was really great kind of actually being in the car and driving around like a real car, like you said, Jeremy, with, you know, getting around in the Endurance, which is a bit, you know-- I guess you could say it's a pre-beta or so. This Air was pretty much almost, almost, you know, production, right, just a couple of parts that they were like-- they had to fabricate to make the car. But that's not-- they will be on the actual production model.

But the car was great. It's beautiful inside. You know, I really got to hand it to Lucid in terms of their design point of view. They went with a very tech-focused but also human kind of look with a lot of nice texture, organic materials, nice woods, nice leathers, and kind of a very flowing design language.

And the car itself was very quiet and extremely powerful. I think you guys know about this tri motor-- or sorry, the dual motor setup that can put up almost like 1,200 horsepower, 500 miles of range with a 113 kilowatt-hour battery. So they got a lot of tech in there. And I got a chance to ride in that.

I got a chance to speak to CEO Peter Rawlinson. And he was very geeking out with me on they have a nice open chassis there in the showroom. We talked about the holder, their Wonderbox system.

That's their electric distributor that allows you to actually-- I didn't realize that it allows you to actually do, you know, kind of-- you can do a two-way system where you can actually use it to power your house in the right situation if you had the right hardware and you need the battery power if your house is out of power, so a lot of cool stuff.

They're kind of actually having these firm orders that people are putting down money for, including for that really high-end Lucid, the Air Dream model, which they're highest-end first-year model. So things are looking up for them. And then also one last thing, from the Wall Street point of view, they're looking to complete their SPAC merger later this year. So that's still in the works for them.

GREG MIGLIORE: One lesson I almost-- like a takeaway here is like maybe really nail down your product before you do the spec, if you will.

[JEREMY LAUGHS]

That way like sort of the bright lights kind of are there once it's all in one place. Yeah. I mean, what was it like to ride in that thing? I mean, just curious. It's-- I mean, pictures look amazing. I have not taken a ride in one.

I think a few years ago they may have had these at the LA Auto Show, if I'm remembering right. But yeah, I mean, what did it feel like? What's it look like?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: You know, I was very surprised that it was extremely quiet. You know, they used a lot of rivets and epoxy sort of bonding for the cars as opposed to like welding. And it really shows come to the rigidity and just the sheer quiet, quiet ride.

With the whole-- with that particular Air model we ran in, it was, you know, 1,000 horsepower. So the driver gave it a little bit of-- a little bit of push on the West Side Highway. And, you know, your head's snapping back. And it was, OK, yeah, this is an electric car that's got some serious oomph.

You know, it compares, obviously, very nicely to the Model S, kind of similar size, but just a better-- I think a better quality interior in my-- design aside, you can kind of have your own takes on that. But I still like the interior itself was just very well done and very high end for a particular buyer, maybe someone that wants a bit more quality, or a Mercedes-like kind of feel in that car.

GREG MIGLIORE: It's sort of like an Uberesque class competitor. But I believe their price points dropped down into like the 70,000 range, too. So you can kind of-- you know, that's a fairly broad range of customers from like well-off to quite rich. But, you know, $70,000, I mean, that's just a really nice suburban, too, you know? So you can reach a lot of different people.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Did you say Wonderbox?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Yeah. So that's that-- it's this piece of equipment that they call-- that's basically a distributor because it's between the motor, inverter, and then also kind of like how you-- basically it's a thing that attaches to the plug when you plug it into the wall, right? So it just takes the DC current, converts it, right? And it also powers from a lot of the accessories in the car.

But that's like the brains of the car, according to Peter Rawlinson. Like that's what we're going to be-- that's their big innovation in terms of the ability to do the two-way, you know, power output and input and just kind of the brains of the car in that regard.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. That sounds super cool. I just love the name Wonderbox. It-- you know, I'm not old enough to remember 1950s advertising, but that totally sounds like something that, you know, Cadillac or Lincoln would have put in their 1955 sedan. This is the new wonder box that air conditions your, you know, whatever. But yeah, I love that-- I love that marketing term, Wonderbox.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: I mean, you'll never see it because it's way deep into the chassis. But it's pretty cool tech, right? Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: I sure hope they put that on like the Monroney, and like, you know, it's one of the options, Wonderbox. You did get that. You know, make sure it's there.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. Make sure you check the Wonderbox option. You want that.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Exactly.

GREG MIGLIORE: I mean, yeah.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Exactly.

GREG MIGLIORE: What-- I'm curious, what do you think-- what was the showroom like? Like if you're looking for a car like this, I mean, you know, did they have orders for customers, like you come in, you sip some champagne? Is it-- because, I mean, really the retail experience is totally changing for all types of car buyers. So like what's their approach?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: You, know they hired-- I can't remember the name now. It was a European interior designer that does a lot of these types of, you know, very Scandinavian, right?

GREG MIGLIORE: Mm.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Yeah, open poor woods, you know? They had the car laid out, nice wood slats everywhere. And then you have the nice concrete floor.

You have the area where you can actually-- you know, so because of the fact that in certain places you can't actually sell cars without having a franchise operation, right, so they can't do that in New York because they need to have a franchise operation, which they're trying to work on. So they have a VR setup, right? You know, they have like two seats and the steering wheel, and you could sit there.

But you put VR goggles on, and they'll actually design the car. So you want a white car with a tan interior, they can do that, or the Mojave trim that they call it. They can make the car, but you can sit inside of it, kind of like hold a fake wheel and sort of think about, OK, I'm in this car, but I can't actually, you know, see it yet in real life because they're not a dealership. You have that.

Then you also have like the retail operation where you can kind of buy the T-shirts, buy the-- the luggage that pairs the car, in addition to the different-- you know, the paint, the sample stuff, and then the leather trim, and the wood trim. You can pick the different-- your design motifs for the car. So they have all that there, too. So it's a very nice high-end operation, but it's not a dealership, right?

GREG MIGLIORE: There was a Tesla studio or something in a mall somewhat near my house, which I believe they closed a while ago because it was like-- I think there was like some ER or VR stuff, and there was like samples on the walls. But there's also like a Model 3 just sitting there. And then you couldn't order the car physically there, but they could like tell you where to go to order the car because franchise laws in Michigan are kind of strict, too.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Right. They did have a car that you could sit inside into as well. One other thing is that right around the corner was the Tesla showroom where you could actually buy and test Teslas in the Meatpacking District. So they're very in each other's faces right there.

GREG MIGLIORE: Do they-- who owns their-- like their dealer, if you will? Is it like factory-owned? Or is it-- is they're actually like a guy who's a Lucid dealer? Like how's that work?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: So they're all-- they're owning all their studios, right? There's Chicago. They're going to open soon in New York out in the Valley. Those are all owned by Lucid themselves.

GREG MIGLIORE: So this could be almost--

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: So I think they're-- yeah, go ahead. Sorry.

GREG MIGLIORE: I was going to say, this could almost be a segment unto itself. But like factory-owned or like company-owned dealerships, especially for these startups, is kind of like a neat way to get around some existing franchise laws, you know? I mean, because then you don't worry about, well, what's the experience like?

The dealers take on things can often sometimes conflict with what the factory's trying to do. You know, it's just a more like seamless integrated process, in my opinion. And you see all these legacy automakers are grappling with, well, jeez, we have four dealers within 15 miles of each other. What are we doing here, you know? So, you know.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Yeah. I mean, it makes sense. If you're a big company, you want to control that whole retail operation and the downstream. And apparently, I didn't realize that the franchise rules-- those laws were in place to protect franchisees from like GM moving in and buying their own dealership and saying, you know, screw you guys, we're going to sell our own cars.

So those laws are kind of antiquated. We don't necessarily need that for-- there's no existing Lucid dealer network that needs to be protected from Lucid themselves. So it doesn't make sense in this day and age. It seems like, why not let them control their retail operations? It's not necessary to have.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. But who knows? It's interesting. I've interviewed some like dealers association folks. And, obviously, they will fight tooth and nail to keep it the status quo, if you will.

But, I mean, I think for like a startup like Lucid or, I mean, really any automaker, but for a startup, it definitely makes sense to go against the grain and have your own sort of business model where you control more of it, you know? And then if it benefits you like financially or just to give you scale, then sure, plan to like, you know, more of the traditional franchise model, which does have its benefits for like Chevy, and Toyota, and like when you're that large.

But, you know, again, on a large scale, those also show the downsides of it, you know? So, yeah. We'll see. It's interesting. I'm curious, too, have they spoken what they're charging and infrastructure plan is? Are they going to, you know, just use existing things, like Electrify America? Are they working on their own product, anything like that?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: They're just going to use the existing networks. They're not planning, as far as I know, about any kind of specific, you know, network for themselves. They're working with Electrify America and all those EV goes and those guys to make it work. But nothing-- as far as I know, nothing like specific or any kind of exclusive deal with any of these charging networks.

GREG MIGLIORE: Interesting. I think that's like the next big solution that everybody's going to be thinking about is like, how do you make it sop regardless of your car, there's a charger on your corner, you know? So.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Well, didn't Mercedes just announce that with the EQS the two years of free-- yeah, I think it's free charging with a specific network. I can't remember the exact one. But, you know, if Mercedes is doing that, EQS, that's their big competitor, right, with Lucid and even the Tesla Model S.

GREG MIGLIORE: I think what they're trying to do there is really get like-- get like their existing like S class customers to say, well, maybe I ought to do this, you know, EQS thing here, whereas, you know, for them, it's almost more like-- it's not like an S Class customer needs the free charging or an EQS customer needs free charging. But you might not want to give up your, you know, bi-turbo V8 to go electric unless there's a reason for you. And so, I mean, I think it's a smart move just to kind of like, you know, grease the wheels a little bit. So, we'll see.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: I read somewhere about how rich people are some of the most stingiest people around. So they really would like that two years of charging.

GREG MIGLIORE: That's why you're rich is you don't waste your money I'm curious, so we'll do quickly around the horn here. Lucid, Lordstown, the reborn Fisker, Tesla, Bollinger, who else am I leaving out here?

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Rivian.

GREG MIGLIORE: Rivian, of course, the one that Amazon, and I think Ford, loved for a little bit, and then who knows what happened there? All these startups, and any I may have left out, I mean, a year from now, who do you think's like-- who do you think we're talking about?

I'm not going to say who's left standing because my guess is I don't think any of these guys are going to be out of business. I think some are going to be doing well, and some are going to be like, who knows, well. But a year from now, who do you think's standing tall? We'll start with you, Jeremy.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: I mean, gosh.

GREG MIGLIORE: You're like, who knows? Pass.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. Like I don't-- I mean, I'd like to say pass. In a year, I've never even set foot in a Lucid dealership-like process, and I've never seen one drive past me. So I'm punting on Lucid.

Obviously, Tesla's going to be around. And I think-- I have a very strong-- a very strong feeling that Rivian is going to really hit the ground running and really kick off. So that's where I'm putting my bets there.

GREG MIGLIORE: How about you, Pras?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: With regards to the newcomers-- and I'm not going to talk-- obviously, Tesla's going to be around. But I think Rivian and-- I think Rivian and Lucid are the most impressive to me from their operations, the people, the factories they have in place, and the products that they've put out that are going to come out soon. I think those are the most impressive to me.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. I'm probably in the same place there. I feel like Rivian, they were really like the media darling like a year or two ago. And then they've been, I think, down like a little bit just kind of off the radar. And I think that's served them well.

We know like frankly a little less about what's going on. And I that's a good thing. Maybe if we knew more, we'd be like, well, I don't know. But, yeah, I mean, that's kind of where I would put it.

I always-- I also think Bollinger is interesting. We've covered them a little bit here. They're very much under the water-- or under the radar is what I should say. Their vehicles are interesting. I've seen their prototypes, their like Defender like old-school vehicles.

But, I mean, they're also very expensive, you know? I would say they're almost like the truck/SUV equivalent of Lucid, you know? That's kind of like, you know, where I put them. And they appear to be on maybe even a smaller scale. So, we'll see.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. I think you hit a point there is that I feel like a lot of these companies that are, you know-- we'll just, you know, lump them all as startup automakers, they're doing what they have to do by, you know, going for the high-end buyer first in order to, you know, be able to make a profit on these vehicles and to recoup their R&D money.

But how many of these high-end, limited availability, hard to buy because they're not at every dealership around you, how many of these vehicles are-- like what is the market for them? Are there that many buyers that-- you know, they're going to have their choice of several different very expensive, high-end, limited availability electric vehicles.

Like how many of these companies are going to be left standing? I know that was your original question, Greg. But, you know, it's just that they're all going for the same buyer.

And does Tesla have that market cornered with their new Plaid? Like who's going to look at the Lucid Air and the Tesla Plaid and choose the Lucid? I know that a number of people are going to. But, you know, you lay out all these options, and they're kind of like-- they're all competing for those same dollars?

GREG MIGLIORE: What about like a Jaguar I-PACE, or a Porsche Taycan, or any of the Audi e-trons? Or, you know, like you've got that luxury like place--

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Mercedes EQS.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yes, exactly.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: The Mercedes EQS.

GREG MIGLIORE: EQE, you know? I mean.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Mm-hmm.

GREG MIGLIORE: It's interesting, too, because you don't have to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars literally to get access to this technology. You could get, you know, a $35,000, you know, EV with a, you know, cheaper interior. But also it's from a legacy automaker that you know is going to be there in five years.

So it's interesting, too, because a lot of these are like sort of like, ooh, look at this electric tech. But it's like, you also-- for the prices they're demanding, it's got to be a luxury car. Whereas some of their like performance and range figures are truly impressive.

But I mean, you can go down market and get something that's got anywhere from like 30 to a couple hundred miles of range. I mean, you could go that way, you know? I mean, the Ford Mach-E is not crazy expensive, and you get over 200 miles of range.

And it looks pretty good, and the infotainment's great. Like you can spend 90,000, or you could spend like 45,000, you know? I mean, there's a lot of different ways this whole thing could shake out.

In a way I think, maybe to answer my question in a weird way, is I wouldn't bet on one. I would take the field, you know? Like a year from now, you're just going to be looking at more interesting options from probably some of the friends we know the best, you know? Se we can leave it there.

Let's go back really old school, old money, Bugatti Chiron. This is-- this is an interesting car to drive. And you drove a very interesting version of it. This is the Pur Sport or the "Purr" Sport. We'll say "Pure" Sport. What did you think of it, Pras? It sucked, right?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: It sucks, yeah. But I don't necessarily drive these cars. [INAUDIBLE] cars, they just sort of-- the opportunity presented itself with the-- you know, they started selling the Chiron Pur Sport, like this more track-focused, more extreme version of the Chiron.

They have one out in Greenwich where they had a Bugatti closed dealership. And I drove the car along with a Butch Leitzinger, who's their-- who's one of their drivers, their Le Mans-winning driver, actually. So he took me on a ride there. And then I hopped in the seat.

And just real quick, the car-- I mean, the car is a bit lighter. It still has a 1,500 horsepower W16 quad turbo engine, which is bonkers to think about, closer gearing to kind of get it more of a-- like a more track-focused [INAUDIBLE] kind of feel, tighter suspension.

How does it all feel? You know, how do you-- how do you grade a $4 million car? I mean, it felt like I was driving a race car, like a prototype, you know, like a Le Mans prototype kind of car, so low to the ground, really, really tight.

Interior of course, is just almost totally bespoke, right, just their own different color schemes, and leathers, and materials. And it's a great kind of domed driving experience with the glass kind of going over above you. It's like a fake T-top, a really cool effect.

I drove the car around. It was definitely a little nerve wracking driving a car on a highway that's that expensive. But it's super planted. Could you say it's probably one of the greatest experiences I've had in a car? Yeah, it's up there. Yeah, for sure.

I will say that-- one thing that's pretty cool is Butch had me roll down the window. And he said, let it out a little bit. And then-- you know, let it out was pretty, pretty nuts, obviously.

And then when you let off-- let off the gas, the waste gate sound is kind of like a diesel engine of like a semi. It was just so loud because it's just these four, you know, banks of engines just kind of working together. And it just sounded so insane.

So, you know, who's the kind of person that wants to buy this car? You're not going to take it in the back road and the twisties because you don't want to ruin this thing. But, you know, if you want a more hyped-up, track-focused Bugatti, you can have it as a daily driver because it could actually work as a daily driver. It's very smooth, and very easy in its comfort setting. So it's there, it's available now on the East Coast, so.

In fact, someone walked in the dealership when I was there and asked Butch about it and said, I want to own my-- some guy who-- a cruising customer, I guess, and we were actually up there in Miller Motorcars, was inquiring about it and wanted to hear more. So there's people out there that want it.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. I mean, it's actually when you talk about, to even just like echo some of these EV business cases, like a very like niche customer that wants to spend a lot of money on something that's unique, you know, that's what Bugatti did, you know? They won a bunch of races a hundred years ago. They, you know, really were part of that first wave of the original like, you know, automobile revolution.

They went out of business, they came back in the year 2000 with an even more upscale business model than they did in the pre-war era, and away you go. I mean, it helps that they're owned by Volkswagen Group. So, you know, they've kind of got those deep pockets to keep them safe. But sounds like a pretty fast car.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: I will say just real quick that that is limited to 60 models-- 60 units, that particular, the Pur Sport. And we had the COO on, a guy by the name Cedric Davy. And he told us that-- like he's mentioned electrification.

Of course, that is indeed in the playbook coming up. They're not going to divulge how, but they are, of course, looking at it. And that might be the future for all of these automakers, if not the most high-end of like the Bugattis of the world.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. It's a really interesting company. I think their business model gives like Volkswagen Group a chance to, you know, really play at like just this crazy expensive level that really none of their other brands do. Like even Bentley doesn't quite stretch into this territory.

And I mean, I always take like the-- like more cars are better in a simple approach. Like I'm glad Alfa Romeo is back on sale in the United States. Like people are like, should we bring Peugeot here? And I'm like, sure. Let's like-- the more the merrier.

Let's-- you know, it's not my job to like hope they make money or don't. Like if the car is good and it's interesting, awesome, you know? And I'm just-- and to me I'm glad like this is a world where Bugatti exists, you know?

So I think that's good for enthusiasts, you know? Even if you can't afford it, you can talk about it, you can think about it, you know? And that's-- to me, that's a cool thing.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Look at Alfa Romeo, right? I mean, people love the Giulia and the Stelvio. So it's actually kind of working out for the right mix, I guess.

GREG MIGLIORE: Did you do anything besides go to Greenwich in your Bugatti, Pras? What does one do in a Chiron Pur Sport?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Well, you know, I was here in downtown Greenwich. And then Butch took us out to the Merritt, the other parkways out there. So we always had it on the parkway.

And on the way back he said, hey, do you want to drive the car back to the dealership? I was like, no. I have no interest in driving local Greenwich traffic. I've no interest in dinging this thing on a low curb or a ramp. You can handle that. I'm out, man. I'm out. No way.

GREG MIGLIORE: I'll say this. The Merritt Parkway is-- even like just-- you can move on it a little bit, but it's also-- it's like an old expressway. It's kind of like narrow. It's not even an expressway. It's more like a route, I don't know.

I was nervous driving a Chrysler Pacifica minivan on it a few years back the last time I was on it just because it's like traffic's right next to you. It's not like Interstate 75--

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: It's wavy.

GREG MIGLIORE: --you know?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Yeah. It's hilly, there's trees everywhere. Yeah, it's beautiful, yeah,

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Beautified.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. There is something when you're driving a very expensive car and you're kind of low to the ground, your visibility inevitably isn't great, you're looking around. It just like your confidence-- you have to like fire yourself up, you know, because if you're not, you're nervous about driving an expensive car, whether it's like $100,000, $80,000, or a million dollars, you got to kind of push through that and be a little fearless because otherwise you can't do it, right, you know?

I mean, because if you said, hey, how do you feel about driving this 4-million-dollar Bugatti, there's only 60 of them, you think you could do that? The sane answer is, hell no. But you got to push through that or you can't do the job. So that's-- that sounds like that was a heck of a--

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Greg, it's a really tough job, man. It's a really tough job that we all have here, you know, difficult.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. This is-- in some ways, it's not really working, for sure. I'll tease out this for a future podcast. I have a 911 Turbo S Cabriolet in my driveway. But even-- it's like $216,000 is the base price. And with options, it's 234. I've driven some hot cars.

But even I like get out there, I'm like, OK, you know? You got you fired up. You got to like take, you know, a sense of your surroundings, make sure you're using it right, you know, because cars always have these different features and like-- like, what does this button do? Oh, that's the button that throws the parking brake on. Don't touch that when you're driving, you know, like just random things that are inevitably a little-- can be daunting and confusing.

I mean-- you know, I remember driving a McLaren once. And I was-- it was like a video shoot, and I was with this other journalist. And he got out of the car and just kind of walked out there and was like, that was awesome.

He's like, you know, I've driven a lot of things fast. But like I don't know how anything works in that car, you know? There's all these weird buttons. He's like, it's just-- it's too much, you know?

And I was like, yeah, I get it actually, you know? That's-- I mean, nothing about the McLaren, it's just like, you know, you're bumping in and out of cars. And, you know, it's a lot. It's a lot of fun.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Mm-hmm.

GREG MIGLIORE: So. Cool. So that's the Bugatti Chiron Pur Sport. Are you going to write anything about it, or was this just like, you know, driving for the day?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: I did a-- I shot some GoPro videos. So I'm going to put that together and put a big review up--

GREG MIGLIORE: Cool.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: --hopefully coming soon, yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: Sounds good. We'll check that out on Yahoo Finance in the future. We actually have a shorter review on Autoblog from last month, so check that out. Lawrence Ulrich handled that, too. So we have a surprising amount of Bugatti content this spring coming at you.

Let's jump over to Jeremy real quick. Your column went up today. It's Wednesday. We'll put up our opinion pieces on Wednesday mornings usually.

You make a point. If you're looking for a traditional engine, like maybe a W12 in a Bugatti, or just a V8, now's the time to buy it because electrics are coming, and it's going to be, you know, like, hey, this could be like the 1960s or '70s where if you want that iconic muscle car, get it now because in a few years, it's going to be a used car, and then maybe you don't want it as much, or it's beat up. This is the time, if you will. So take us through that.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. And I can already see from early-- a couple early comments that, you know-- I don't know if I made the point as clearly as I could have, I don't know. But I noticed some people are saying like, you're telling everyone to go out and buy these super expensive vehicles, and you're not taking in the value proposition. But that's not-- that's not what I mean here.

What I'm saying is, you know, talk to almost anyone that grew up in the, you know-- or came of age, of driving age in the '60s and '70s, and they'll tell you about all these awesome cars that they owned, you know, Chevelles, and Trans Ams, and Mustangs, and, you know, GTOs, whatever, and, you know, everyone always says, man, I wish I'd of held on to that car, wish I'd never sold it, you know, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. The value proposition applies equally back then as it did now. And that applies equally, whether the car is powered by gasoline or electricity.

So the point that I'm trying to make here is a lot of people-- if you read our site, a lot of our readers, seem to be extremely concerned about the coming wave of electricity. They don't want it. They want their cars powered by gasoline. And the point is, we've never had better gasoline cars than we have right now.

So if you belong in that camp-- and I mean, let's be clear. I'm going to buy an electric car. Like if I'm choosing right now, even though I grew up on, you know, restoring old classic muscle cars, and I love them, if I'm buying right now, I'm buying electric. And I'm going to put my money where my mouth is in my next vehicle purchase.

But this is America. You're clearly allowed to spend your money how you want to. And if you want to spend it on a gasoline-fueled vehicle, you've got better choices now than you've ever had before. You know, your typical daily driver is great, you know, a 2.0-liter, turbocharged, four cylinder, as they all seem to be these days, great. They're all good cars.

But look at what is actually out there available. Chevy's got a 650-horsepower Camaro, Ford has a 760-horsepower Shelby Mustang. Dodge will sell you an 800-plus-horsepower Challenger if you want.

So, you know, if you're looking at the coming wave of electric vehicles as similar to what happened in the end of the muscle car era when efficiency took over because of gas shortages, and emissions controls, and all that, if you're looking at this coming wave of electric vehicles in the same way that you think fondly back of the late 1960s and early '70s, now is the time.

Like go get that car that you have been longing for, park it in your garage because that option is going to be taken away from you sooner rather than later. So, yeah. I mean, the idea is that there's more and better choices today than ever before. And, you know, now-- like I say in the piece, now is the time to get one if that's what you want.

You know, if you don't want that Tesla, if you feel that, you know, erroneously believe that the emissions are worse in electric vehicles because, you know, it's just a coal plant that's charging it, you're wrong, but if you feel that way, at least you've got these great choices, you know? Like there's so many great cars right now.

And whether it is a 16-cylinder quad turbo, you know, Bugatti Chiron that you're lusting after or, you know, the Ferrari or Lamborghini, or more down to Earth, a Shelby GT500 Mustang, these kinds of vehicles are not going to be on showroom floor-- showroom floors that much longer. Like the electric wave is coming.

And every-- you know, I'd say half of the opinion articles that we've run up to this point have been talking about electrified vehicles. And you run through the comments on them, and there's always the people that are like seemingly extremely upset by it, you know?

You're not being forced right now to go electric. You've still got options in internal combustion, and they're better than they've ever been. So, you know, just take this time to pick out that car that you want to be driving over the next, you know, 10, 15, 20 years and hold on to it because no one's taking it away from you.

GREG MIGLIORE: I think a good analogy is you probably want a 19, you know, I don't know, 70 Oldsmobile, say, Cutlass, you probably want a 1978 Oldsmobile Cutlass a lot less than you do the, you know, its predecessor, if you will, aesthetically from a power standpoint.

Everything's changing, you know? We're sort of on the precipice of like going from sails to steam engines like in the 1880s, you know? We saw sea power, if you will. You know, like you, I'm going electric next. That's-- I don't need a car right now.

And for me personally, it's interesting because I'm almost at a spot where I'm like, I don't think I want to buy a car right now because I feel like in a year my options are going to be so much better and maybe even cheaper. I also don't want to buy a car right now because everything's crazy expensive, and inflation is like nuts, a lot of different reasons. But, I mean, you know, there's a lot of different ways to look at it, so.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. You know, if you're of a certain age, you-- you either remember growing up in that era, or, you know, if you're my age, you remember your parents, and uncles, and extended family members talking about how great the old days were with, you know, the muscle cars and all of that, and how terrible it was, you know, through the 1980s because cars could never compare to what they had when they were kids.

And if you're worried that that's going to happen with-- with electric vehicles, again, I think you're wrong because electric vehicles are extremely good performance cars. But if-- you've still got options right now. Like use this time to pick out your forever car if you're not going to get on the electric bandwagon, you just don't believe in it.

Yeah. But you're absolutely right about-- I think there's a lot of people that are holding out because there's so many more options coming onto the market right now. You know, Volkswagen is just hitting their ID.4. But, you know, there's going to be, you know, a million different ID versions.

The Mustang Mach-E that you mentioned, that's-- you know, that's going to keep getting more and more available, more versions of it are going to come out, less expensive, more expensive, higher performance. And everyone's getting on this bandwagon. You mentioned Cadillac earlier in this podcast, that GM might electrify the entire range.

And, you know, I think that we are in this weird transitionary period right now where car companies have stopped investing in internal combustion in favor of investing into engineering and R&D resources for batteries and electric motors because that's the direction things are going. And they have to.

But the good news is if you don't want to go down that way, if you consider yourself old school, or you just-- you know, you don't like it for whatever reason, even if it's political-- you know, I'm not-- I'm not throwing any-- anyone under the bus here. Whatever your reasoning is, at least we got to this point where the internal combustion engine is so good, makes so much power, or can be, you know, so-- so efficient. It's amazing how far we've gotten with this.

And if this is the pinnacle, if this is the apogee of internal combustion, like that's a fun time to be an enthusiast in, you know? Like we've still got Chargers, and Challengers, and Durangos, and Jeep 392s, and RAM TRXs, and Raptors. Like all that stuff is there right now for the taking.

The electrics are coming, and I welcome it. But let's not lose sight of the fact that we've got-- you know, we're at this amazing, amazing place in automotive, you know, history right now.

GREG MIGLIORE: It's certainly not dull, that's for sure. Any thoughts real quick on that, Pras?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: I just want to echo what kind of Jeremy's talking about with-- I think he's right about the-- this is the last time to get a really good analog car. You know, you want that Air Cool 911, better get it now. I'm definitely feeling the itch. I'm like, how can I scrounge up enough money? Sell my apartment and sell all of my goods, you know, to get that thing because it's like-- it's just going to go away.

It's like-- you know, we're going to tell like cars like that are going to be like buying watches, you know, mechanical watches. We appreciate them, they're great. We appreciate the mechanicals, but they're just of a different age. Why bother when you can have an amazing Rivian pickup that can hold a thousand things and, you know, can do it, and you can charge it maybe with a solar panel, who knows, right? So I'm totally--

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Well, I mean, it happens in every industry. I feel-- you know, I'm into cameras and photography, to. You know, right now, mirrorless is the thing.

But there's tons of people that are clutching on to their digital SLRs and, you know, saying, you know, when I die, you can take it out of my vise grip. But there were people when SLRs were around that they were still, you know, looking through the top of through-the-lens cameras with the little mirrors and holding at waist level. And they didn't want to let those go.

Like things march on. And if you don't want to be part of the coming wave, if you want to hold on to what you're used to, or, you know, for whatever reason, like that's where we are with cars right now. We're switching over to this new technology, whether you like it or not. And if you don't like it, now is your chance to get the one that you actually want and to hold on to.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: And just real quick, the changing of the guard, times changing, I saw a guy with a Tesla Model 3 parked outside the East Village charging it by putting a orange cable through his window out of his apartment into the car on the street. So, you know, people are finding ways to make it work even here in New York City. So, yeah, you're right, the change in the guard is happening right. Just a matter of time.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: One of my neighbors does that. I'll be walking the dog, and you'll just see this like the cord coming out from under the garage going to like, I think it's a Model 3. I'm like, all right. I mean, it's funny because I don't have a level 2 charger.

So sometimes I will like plug like, you know, the mobile chargers. And I did this with the ID.4. And then I run it out of the garage, and you back the car in.

And, you know, the mail guy and the Amazon driver's kind of looking at you like, what is this guy doing? Is he trying to set his house on fire? But it's fun. I love it. It's, you know, a different lifestyle.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: I've often wondered about that, too. Like what are these-- what are the ratings of the extension cords that people are running to plug into their electric vehicles? Are they running like, you know, 10 gauge, 12 gauge, 16? Like what's actually up to spec there that they-- like what kind of cord should you really be using if you're running your long extension cord to your electric car?

GREG MIGLIORE: Oh, I don't even want to know. I'm nervous about when I put up my like holiday lights, and then I close the garage door on the cord, which is not something you should do. And I'm always kind of crossing my fingers, like, this is the year everything's still going to be fine. What happens when the cord like goes out?

I have a little bit of like a Chevy Chase streak in me, if you will, when it comes to putting up the Christmas lights. I put up too many. I've shocked myself. Like literally one time I was like trying to change a light bulb, like with it plugged in. Like I can't even like make this stuff up. So, yeah, please, automakers, send your electric cars to me.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: You know, they make these-- I've got this four-plug unit. It's got like a 6-foot cable on it and then four plugs. And it is a, like a, I don't know. It's got some sort of fuse in it that will go off and flip off if-- so I get my comfort from that because I'm a very anxious person, you know?

And I'll plug electric vehicles in just like what you're talking about, Greg. But I only will do it into that like outlet extender because it's got the safety-- the safety net on it. So yeah. I know, Pras, those New York people running them out of their apartment windows. I don't think they're-- I don't think they're following those guidelines.

GREG MIGLIORE: I was going to say, that sounds safer than any other option we're discussing here.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: All right. Let's-- we don't have any "Spend My Moneys" this week. But we do have an update from Sean from episode 606. This goes way back. It's sort of like a note from the past.

This was in December 2019. Oh my gosh, you guys remember December 2019? That's a hell of a good time, right? We didn't know it was coming like six weeks later.

Anyways, Sean was looking to sell his Pontiac G8, again episode 606. We'll include the link here in the show just so everybody has it. He ended up buying a car last May, giving us an update finally. That's great. Again, send us your questions, your updates, whatever you're doing. You want us to spend your money, you have a question about anything, that's podcast@Autoblog.com.

Here's what he bought. After a little bit of debate, he picked up a 2016 Audi S6 Prestige with 30-- I will say 31,000 miles, for about $39,000, which, given the inflation and what we've seen for used car prices, you generally will see like premium models for over 40 grand. So getting up a Prestige, an S6 Prestige, seems like a pretty good deal.

So that little bit of an update, blast from the past-- past. He's generally pretty happy. This is his third German car, but his first Audi. He likes the experience so far.

So we'll see. Keep us posted on how the Audi keeps riding there, Sean. Thanks for listening. Thanks for, you know, being a loyal Autoblog consumer and user.

That's about all the time we have this week, guys. Thanks for joining, thanks for listening. Pras and Jeremy, you guys have a great weekend. And we'll see you on the other side. Everybody be safe out there.

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