Lordstown Endurance Takes Aim at Commercial Fleet Pickups
Full disclosure: I am a Tesla fan, and I want Tesla to introduce a fleet type pickup. The Cyber Truck is cool and everything, but it isn’t going to sell many units. Maybe Tesla will get serious about a real pickup that appeals to jobsite types and commercial customers. However, right now it looks like they want to focus on cars and their semi’s. I pulled a lot of info from Lordstown’s site as well as some YouTube spots and a couple of other sites. All sources are linked to in the article or at the end.
Now on to the article. I used the Lordstown logo as the lead graphic here. I guess it is ok. I mean they use the electric symbol and then kind of a bolt head. It makes sense. This is a no-nonsense truck for working people. They aren’t going for style points here (as you will see from the pictures of the vehicle). They don’t have a ton of innovation either. The drive train is kind of innovative (more on that later), but everything else is just a standard truck.
Lordstown Motors took over the Lordstown, Ohio GM plant. GM shutdown the plant and then sold it to Lordstown Motors. Lordstown is a startup aiming to make pickup trucks for commercial fleet customers. Examples of likely Lordstown customers are landscapers, construction companies, service companies of all types and more. The CEO of Lordstown is Steve Burns. Burns is also the founder of the company and used to be the CEO of the Workhorse Group which developed electric powertrains for UPS delivery trucks. On August 3, 2020, Lordstown Motors announced that they would merge with a special-purpose acquisition company named DiamondPeak Holdings. The combined company will be listed on the NASDAQ with the symbol “RIDE” which I think is pretty cool.
There is not a lot of innovation in the Lordstown Endurance. At least there is not a lot of innovation in the looks of the vehicle inside or out. There is some innovation in the drive train. This truck has four motors – one motor per wheel. Each motor has an integrated CPU and claims to be the “World’s First All-Electric In-Wheel Drive System Built for Work”. Lordstown claims the truck only has “4 moving parts”.
Image from Lordstown Motors official website.
It is an interesting idea. Tesla has 3 motors on its TM Cyber Truck and still has some mechanical linkages to the wheels. By mounting a motor and control unit in each wheel, Lordstown would seemingly be able to gain some efficiencies and cost reduction by being able to produce one type of wheel unit and using it on all four wheels.
Image from Lordstown Motors official website.
The Lordstown Endurance lists its projected range at 250 miles + on a full charge. They show equivalent MPG as 75 MPGe. The 250+ gives me pause. Why is it so low? I went and looked at the Tesla Cybertruck for comparison and found that it is not that low. The Tesla SM (single motor) model truck has a mileage of 250 miles on a single charge while claiming 83 MPGe. Other models of the Cyber Truck reach 500 miles, but there is only one model of the Lordstown Endurance at the moment.
The Lordstown Endurance is a pretty plain looking truck. I am not saying that is a bad thing. They definitely have a pretty cool nice smooth front end with apparently a large frunk. We don’t know that for sure yet because the show and tells of the truck we have seen have been brief and not very revealing. They did jazz up the wheel coverings with some plastic or high impact type coverings that look like motor windings. I am not really digging them right now, but maybe they will appeal to some people.
Again, they are trying to appeal to a commercial truck fleet type customer. I think they were successful doing that.
We don’t have a lot of details on the interior looks. Two shots I was able to find came from a YouTube replay of a show called The Daily Buzz (from Youngstown, OH). Again, nothing super innovative. It looks like the truck might come with Apple Car play, but we don’t know much about options or actual features at this point. It is a nice interior, but it is not that innovative or cool. It gets the job done which is what this truck is all about.
As of September 24, 2020, the Lordstown Endurance had 40,000 pre-orders. According to their CEO Steve Burns, that is enough orders to sell out their first year of production. The truck should be out driving around sometime in 2021.
I would put this truck in the second tier of EV trucks behind the all electric F150 E and the Rivian all electric. I am not putting the Tesla Cyber truck in the same category because it seems like a niche vehicle more than a fleet vehicle. I know I compared the Cyber Truck stats to the Endurance, but that is simply because the Cyber Truck has some stats. In the end I think it will be the F150 E dominating the commercial market with the Endurance grabbing a small segment of it. We will see, but the lack of style and real substance of the Endurance will keep it from becoming a dominant force.
This company turned out to be a train wreck. The potential to have a work truck, a workhorse truck was immense. However, unethical management and smoke and mirrors derailed the company. Lordstown Motors still exists, but it’s future is murky at best. It is too bad because the potential was there to sell a lot of electric trucks in a wide open everyday truck market. That is a big fumble by this group.