In a recent press release, Lucid told us that it is offering something Tesla hasn’t in years: 80-amp home charging. While this is cool in some ways, it seems like something the rest of the industry has moved back away from. After I cover what Lucid shared in the press release, I want to explain why nobody else is doing this.
Lucid’s Fancy New Home Charging Station, & Other Accessories
Lucid recently announced the launch of Lucid Vehicle Accessories, an ever-growing line of complementary accessories for the entire Lucid Air vehicle lineup. The first product in this new ecosystem is the Lucid Connected Home Charging Station. With this home charging system, owners can make use of Lucid’s industry-leading 80 miles per hour charge rate, meaning that they can add up to 80 miles of range in just one hour.
Lucid’s first at-home charging solution has a whopping 19.2 kW of electrical power, letting you charge your vehicle up to 80 miles per hour — which just so happens to be Lucid Air’s industry-leading fast AC charging rate. Basically, the home station will let you charge your vehicle twice as quickly as if you were using the included charging cable.
Lucid says its Design and Engineering teams created a home charging system that is smaller than any competitor, despite delivering that whopping 19.2 kW. The new system is in an elegant black casing that can be wall-mounted either indoors or outdoors. The station connects to the vehicle with a 24-foot charging cable designed to be thinner than competitors, improving the home charging experience.
This product is the first of its kind to support Lucid customers who want to integrate their vehicles with the company’s future energy ecosystem. It is equipped with hardware ready for two-way electrical power and Wi-Fi enabled for updates that will come wirelessly in the future.
Lucid is also offering some cargo accessories.
Lucid Air Crossbars are designed to be mounted on the roof and minimize drag, perfect for those customers who enjoy outdoor activities such as biking or kayaking. The crossbars load rated for up to 165 pounds, ensuring that most gear can be transported. Lucid Air Crossbars also Yakima mounts-compatible, meaning possible gear attachments include several bike racks or a surfboard rack. All of these add-ons attach seamlessly with no difficulty so you can focus on your adventure rather than fumbling around with incompatible parts.
But, sometimes you want to carry extra cargo with more protection from the elements, so they’ve got that covered, too. Lucid Air’s in-house designed Cargo Capsule is not only sleek, but it also provides optimal aerodynamics to help maximize range. The 11.47 cu/ft cargo space adds 33% more capacity to Lucid Air’s already class-leading 32.5 cu/ft interior cargo area — all without needing to fold the rear seats!
The sleek and roomy capsule, made of a molded ABS shell, comes in black with split glossy and matte black finishes. The Lucid logo is also glossed in black. You can open it from either side for easy access to the extra space inside, which has lighting so you can see even when it’s dark outside.
For people who don’t want to add the air drag of crossbars and a roof cargo box, Lucid is also offering an interior upgrade. The Lucid Air all-weather floor mats, which were also designed in-house, are made of a heavy-duty material that can withstand any season. All mats are non-slip and waterproof, and have raised edges for more protection than standard carpeted floor mats. The Lucid All-Weather Mats come in four colors — Ceramic, Graphite, Saddle, and Black — to match the interior options of the Lucid Air. Floor mats will be available as a three-piece set.
The Lucid accessories are now available for order, and full availability is expected by late 2022. The Cargo Capsule will be available earlier in 2023. The Lucid Connected Home Charging Station has limited quantity at the moment but availability for this product will open up by 2023.
Tesla Once Offered An 80-Amp Home Charger
One thing I hear pretty often from EV haters (sometimes oil-funded trolls) is that installing EV charging in most houses is downright impossible. Why? Because their buddy is an electrician, and he put in a Tesla charger once. And, you know “hwat?” The thing needed 80 amps of power! In most cases, you’ll need to upgrade your whole house’s wiring and get an upgrade from the power company!!
There is a nugget of truth there. Early Tesla Model S vehicles were available that could pull up to 22 kW of power from the most powerful home and destination chargers. Some people opted for this, and in those times, it made sense to get a hefty 80 MPH home charger because the Supercharger network was in relative infancy. When you’re going to rely on Level 2 charging exclusively, it makes sense to get the best you can get, even if that’s expensive.
But, the landscape has changed significantly since then. Facelift Model S vehicles and all other Model X, 3, and Y vehicles can’t pull that kind of power. The latest S, X, and larger battery Model 3/Y vehicles can only pull 11.5 kW (48 amp) maximum at 240 volts. The lower spec 3 and Y vehicles can only pull 7.7 kW (32 amp). Why? Because charging at 80 amps just isn’t necessary anymore.
A 7.7 kW or 11.5 kW circuit can easily charge a vehicle while you sleep, even from dead to full. If you do end up needing extra range on the worst days, there are superchargers almost everywhere. Non-Tesla vehicles are largely in the same boat, with few vehicles offering anything more powerful than an 11.5 kW onboard charger.
The fact is, 19 kW of power (80 amps) is too expensive and not useful for the vast majority of drivers. A house with a 100-amp service wouldn’t even be able to support it, and a house with 200 amp service would only support that if you don’t run a bunch of electric appliances and HVAC already. So, in both cases, an expensive electrical service upgrade would drive the cost of installation into the $4,000+ range, and all for a capability you probably don’t need.
But, Lucid is a luxury brand, and its cars are well north of 100 grand. If you can afford an Lucid Air, you’re probably in a position to waste several thousand dollars to get the fastest home Level 2 charging. I’m not sure why you’d want that, but it’s your money to burn.
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