Lucid Air owners will have a glut of new features added to their cars with the brand’s first major software update.
Headed by ex-employees from the likes of Tesla and Audi, U.S startup Lucid entered the EV market with its Air luxury sedan, which beats the Tesla Model S on the claimed electric range thanks to a claimed EPA range of 836km.
Deliveries of the Air have begun rolling out to US customers from the factory in Arizona. Now, owners will have access to a raft of new features – including on the driver assist front.
Lane-centring and adaptive cruise have been combined to create Highway Assist, which is designed to make long drives simpler by more actively steering the car rather than only intervening if the driver drifts towards the white lines.
Lucid says its parking assists are now more user friendly, with smarter graphics.
High-beam assist has been added, and will automatically switch to low beams when other vehicles or light sources are detected.
Updates will also be applied to the digital dashboard and infotainment panels, which have been changed to offer more ergonomically-friendly layouts.
Favourite apps are more easily accessible, navigation and maps have been put directly in front of the driver, built-in Alexa voice control allows passengers to control the climate from anywhere in the car, and range predictions are now designed to be more accurate.
These features will be instantly available to the driver as soon as they sit down thanks to ‘Instant-On’, which means the cockpit touch points come alive when the driver is buckled and ready to drive – no start button required.
Vehicle entry and exit will become smoother with improved auto locking and unlocking for owners using a mobile phone and or key fob, while a De-Ice Mode will help owners in colder climates by simultaneously using heat setting, wiper movement, and fluid to quickly clear the windshield.
The software will be delivered to all Airs, free of charge, via an over-the-air (OTA) update, occurring incrementally over the following weeks.
Lucid is far from alone in offering OTA improvements; legacy brands such as Ford are following in the footsteps of Tesla in adding capability to bring new features to owners remotely.
OTA updates will allow Lucid to continually improve its range of features relative to competitors like BMW and Tesla.
Lucid senior vice president of digital, Michael Bell said, “Thanks to integrated software and hardware engineering, Lucid has the in-house technical depth to enhance our vehicles long after they leave the assembly line…the Lucid Air was engineered from the start with the capability to get better over time.”
Lucid has confirmed the production of the Air for right-hand drive markets including the UK, but we’re still waiting on an indication of if and when the brand will land on Australian shores.