Lordstown Motors, the electric-vehicle startup that grew out of a former Chevy Cruze production plant in Lordstown, Ohio, revealed its first product today, a $52,500 electric pickup truck. Vice President Mike Pence made an appearance at the event, where he praised Lordstown Motors for working to create new manufacturing jobs in the area.
The Endurance is the first product to emerge from Lordstown Motors’ effort to renew Lordstown, Ohio’s manufacturing economy. In 2018, General Motors announced it would close its Chevy Cruze production facility there. Towards the end of 2019, following a massive UAW strike, the Detroit-based auto giant sold Lordstown Motor Corp. the plant and loaned the fledgling company $40 million.
Despite being founded with sustained employment for the people of Lordstown in mind, the new plant can’t yet match the 4,500 employees who worked there when it was last operational in 2016 under GM’s control. Initially, the new factory will employ 400 assembly workers, 100 motor line workers, 100 battery line workers, and 300 engineers to make the Endurance, according to The Detroit News.
Compared to the angular Tesla Cybertruck, the Endurance looks much more like a traditional pickup truck. The vehicle has no axles, and instead drives using four electric motors, one for each wheel. According to Lordstown Motors, the truck can go up to 250 miles on a full charge.
The Detroit News reports that Lordstown Motors plans on marketing the car to clients interested in buying fleets of trucks, such as utility companies: reportedly, FirstEnergy already has an order in for 250 of the trucks. Servpro, a company founded by a native of the Lordstown area, has also signed a letter of intent to buy 1,200 of the new vehicles. The focus on fleet customers may be an attempt to outmaneuver competitors like Ford, which released an updated version of its popular consumer truck, the F-150, the same day as the Endurance reveal. Lordstown Motors expects to be able to deliver the first of its trucks to consumers in January.