Lucid Group’s (NASDAQ:LCID) third-quarter earnings report showed a significant bump in Lucid Air reservations and record liquidity. With the commencement of deliveries and a production ramp-up, LCID stock is one of the best electric vehicle plays in the market. However, due to its recent success, it is valued like an industry stalwart rather than a newcomer.
On Sept. 29, the EV startup announced it would begin deliveries of its Lucid Air Dream Edition in late October. The luxury sedan boasts a range of 520 miles per charge. This makes it the longest-range EV rated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). It’s also noteworthy because it beat the range of Tesla’s (NASDAQ:TSLA) more expensive Model S by over 100 miles.
The first Lucid Air Dream Editions were delivered on Oct. 30, and the vehicle has been getting rave reviews.
LCID stock has surged an incredible 105% in the past two months. With shares trading at a remarkably lofty valuation, it’s best to wait for a correction before getting in.
Lucid Looks to Expand Capacity as Reservations Increase
At the end of September, the company said Lucid Air reservations stood at 13,000. By mid-November, Lucid had more than 17,000 reservations. No doubt some were persuaded by the EPA rating, along with the company’s successful marketing event covering the launch of the Lucid Air.
What’s more, the day after the company announced its updated reservation numbers, the Lucid Air won the 2022 MotorTrend Car of the Year award.
As demand increases, Lucid is looking to increase production capacity. The company plans to add 2.85 million square feet of manufacturing space to its Advanced Manufacturing Plant (AMP-1) in Casa Grande, Ariz. The will increase the facility’s maximum production capacity from a projected 34,000 cars a year currently to 90,000 by the end of 2023.
The Lucid Air has a starting price of $77,400 (it will run consumers a little under $70,000 after a federal tax credit). Assuming the company makes 34,000 EVs next year, it could generate more than $2.6 billion in revenue. And that doesn’t include customization packages or any add-ons, which should increase the final sales figure by a considerable margin.
Lucid Sports an Attractive Balance Sheet
Lucid ended the third quarter with a cash balance of $4.8 billion after adding $4.4 billion in new investments. Consequently, the company’s financial flexibility has improved considerably, enabling it to finance its expansion with relative ease. Moreover, it currently has minimal debt on its balance sheet.
While the company has recognized less than $1 million in sales so far, that situation should be dramatically different next year as more cars are delivered to drivers. However, Lucid will continue to post losses and negative cash flows for the foreseeable future. For the most recent quarter, losses from operations totaled $497.1 million, while it posted free cash flows of -$384.4 million.
Losses are to be expected at this stage in the game, but there are a few risks investors need to be aware of. These include any production troubles the company encounters, as well as continued supply chain disruptions that could result in material or parts shortages. Perhaps the biggest potential long-term risk, though, is the entry of new competitors in the luxury EV space. All eyes are on the Lucid Air for now, but that could quickly change.
The Bottom Line on LCID Stock
So far, Lucid Group has delivered on its promises and is seeing rising demand for its award-winning electric vehicle. However, with a market cap larger than that of Ford (NYSE:F) and General Motors (NYSE:GM), this basically pre-revenue startup is trading at an unreasonable valuation.
Investors should wait for a better entry point before buying LCID stock.
Muslim Farooque is a keen investor and an optimist at heart. A life-long gamer and tech enthusiast, he has a particular affinity for analyzing technology stocks. Muslim holds a bachelor’s of science degree in applied accounting from Oxford Brookes University.