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Tesla rival Lucid Motors jumps in public debut

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Yahoo Finance’s Pras Subramanian joins the Yahoo Finance Live panel to discuss Electric vehicle startup Lucid Motors making its public debut today on the Nasdaq under symbol "LCID."

Video Transcript

[MUSIC PLAYING]

ZACK GUZMAN: Welcome back to "Yahoo Finance Live." Today, we are awaiting Tesla's results after the bell. But they are not the only EV company we have our eyes on today, as Lucid Motors makes its debut on the NASDAQ under the symbol LCID officially through their SPAC merger. For more on that, I want to bring I'm Yahoo Finance's Pras Subramanian, who has more details on what we should be watching for there with Lucid. Pras?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Yeah, Zack they finally got it done, a last-minute, sort of vote, a last-minute appeal here to complete the SPAC merger with CCIV, that's Churchill Capital Corp, the blank check company. This deal was announced back in February. And they're hoping to close the deal on the 22nd. But they had to extend the voting because they didn't have enough votes. So kind of a strange situation, trying to convince a broad group of investors.

Remember back in February, this was like a meme stock. And so now you have the CEO Peter Rawlinson, you had people from Churchill pleading, sending out emails and even Instagram videos, pleading with the shareholders to vote on this deal. And they got it done.

Ticker symbol LCID doing well today. But it came down to the wire. And it wasn't looking too good by Friday morning.

KRISTIN MYERS: So Pras, really--

ZACK GUZMAN: [INAUDIBLE]

KRISTIN MYERS: No, go ahead, Zack.

AKIKO FUJITA: Well, I mean, I was just going to ask you here, Kristin, whether or not the roadway ahead-- it was interesting to see the guerilla marketing campaigns. They had a bunch of boxes around New York, talking about what was inside the box. Turns out it's their car inside the box. And really, when you stack their car up against what Tesla's trying to do, of course, the other traditional automakers, what they're trying to do as well, what do you see as the positioning here for Lucid, as they are now a publicly traded company? A lot more eyeballs on them to get the job done.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Yeah, for sure. And also with the pop today, people expect some performance too. They made about 4 and 1/2 billion bucks from this merger, 2 billion from Churchill but the rest from the Saudis through a private investment, public equity, a PIPE deal. So there's a lot of money on the line here.

We got an update today. The company said they have now 11,000 firm orders. This is up from 10,000 they had a month ago when the CEO was on with us, Peter Rawlinson, on Yahoo Finance with us, talking about how they had a bunch of orders, but also some people had put down $7,000 in a deposit.

Now, where is the money going to? The money is actually being used. They're pulling forward a lot of capital expenditures, in particular in their factory in Arizona, mainly to increase capacity of the Lucid Air sedan. They anticipate that still to be coming, to be actually in production, Myles, out in the end of the back half of 2021.

But also, they need to invest in the Project Gravity. That's their SUV. They need to invest in that line at the factory too.

But the big picture, like you said, Zack, they really see it also as a battle between just themselves and Tesla. They don't really consider the traditional OEMs their competitors. And that's because they really believe that Tesla has the best software and hardware stack in the industry. They've had this big, big head-start with EV. And then they have really good technology.

And to be honest with you, Lucid does too. They have really proprietary motors, powertrain, a battery and software system that they're using that I actually saw first-hand. It looks very impressive. So they hope to really bridge that gap. And we're going to hear more about that tonight as well with CEO Peter Rawlinson of Lucid Motors on 4 o'clock show later today.

KRISTIN MYERS: Absolutely. Thanks so much for doing that promo. Again, tune in at 4:00 PM for that conversation with Peter Rawlinson in the 3:00 to 5:00 PM hour. Pras Subramanian, thanks so much for breaking all of that down for us.