The base Lucid Air will start at $77,400, but buyers will be eligible for a $7,500 federal tax credit.

When Lucid formally unveiled its new Air sedan a few weeks back it focused on the two most powerful and long-range models. They also happened to be the most expensive versions of the battery-electric vehicle, the Dream Edition going for a hefty $169,000.

Now, it turns out, you’ll be able to get into a “base” version of the Lucid Air sedan for less than the base version of the Tesla Model S while delivering much the same level of performance.

“Our vision from the beginning – what drives this company – is creating the world’s best EV technology while making it progressively more attainable over time,” said Lucid founder and CEO Peter Rawlinson, in a statement. “With the starting price of the Lucid Air range announced today, we are setting the stage for broader adoption of the latest, game-changing EV technology.”

(Taking Flight: Lucid launches its Air EV.)

The cabin of the Air opts for high-tech simplicity.

Set to go on sale next year, the Lucid Air will be offered in four different editions. At the upper end, the Dream and Grand Touring models will feature 113 kilowatt-hour battery packs capable of delivering 517 miles per charge – at least, based on estimates of what the final EPA numbers are expected to show. The Air Grand Touring will punch out 800 horsepower while the Dream will take that up to 1,080 hp, enough to propel it from 0 to 60 in about 2.5 seconds while passing through the trips after a quarter-mile run in 9.9 seconds or less.

Neither model will come cheap, the Grand Touring carrying a starting price of $139,000, the Dream priced at $169.000, putting them in contention with the likes of the Porsche Taycan Turbo S and the upcoming Tesla Model S Plaid.

But Lucid will make the Air a lot more accessible for those willing to settle for a bit less range and performance. The Air Touring, at $95,000, will still make 620 hp and get 406 miles per charge, Lucid claims. And the Air model will match that range and deliver 480 hp.

(Lucid Air aims to blow away the competition — at least on the dragstrip.)

The Lucid Air is the first EV to use a 900-volt electrical architecture, exceeding the 800-volt system on the new Porsche Taycan.

Right now, the best Tesla is offering some comparable versions of the Model S, including the Model S Plaid with a range of 520 miles and an equally big price tag starting at $134,490.

The EV maker also offers a version of the Model S that puts out 402 miles per charge with the recently added Long Range Plus. And that model puts out a much more modest 275 hp. It’s a bit more affordable than the base Lucid Air, at a starting price of $71,990, but there’s a big asterisk here.

Tesla hit the federal sales threshold that meant its federal incentives began to phase out last year and vanished entirely on Jan. 1. Lucid buyers will be eligible for $7,500 tax credits bringing the price of admission down to just $69,900 for a vehicle delivering longer range and better performance than the Tesla Model S Long Range Plus.

The downside is that the start-up plans to roll out its new Air in descending order, based on price. So, while the first Air Dream editions will be handed over to customers early next year, the base Air model isn’t expected to be ready for sale until 2022. All versions will be assembled at the new Lucid assembly plant now under construction near Phoenix.

(Lucid working up second model – even as it announces potential record-setting charging times.)

The company has already begun taking $300 reservations in advance through its online website.

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