LORDSTOWN, Ohio — Commercial electric vehicle startup Lordstown Motors has received approval to ship the first batch of its first model, the Endurance pickup.
The company announced Tuesday that the first units of the initial batch of 500 trucks were leaving the plant after they passed safety tests and hit several key benchmarks needed to be sold. It did not state how many of the pickups have been made.
“I am very proud of the Lordstown Motors and Foxconn EV Ohio team for their hard work, grit and tenacity in achieving this milestone,” said Edward Hightower, the company's president and CEO. Production of the vehicles remains slow, though, but the company reiterated that “volume will accelerate as we resolve supply-chain constraints.”
The trucks were built at the former General Motors small-car assembly plant in Lordstown that was purchased by Taiwan’s Foxconn Technology Group, the world’s largest electronics maker. The deal became official in May, with Foxconn immediately assuming manufacturing operations at the Lordstown plant and taking over the employment of approximately 400 LMC workers.
Under the terms of the agreement, Lordstown Motors received $230 million, plus the reimbursement of approximately $27 million in operating and expansion costs.
Earlier this year, Lordstown said it expected to produce 3,000 of its flagship Endurance electric trucks before the end of 2023. In September, the company projected that it would deliver 50 trucks to customers this year, and up to 450 more in the first half of 2023, as long as it can raise enough capital.
The company has struggled to raise money and get trucks out the factory door to customers. In its previous quarterly filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, its auditors raised doubts that the automaker will be in business in the coming year.
Lordstown Motors also announced that the Endurance is a finalist for the North American Truck of the Year award. The award will be announced in January.
Editor's Note: The videos in this story are from previous reports on Lordstown Motors and electric vehicle manufacturing in Ohio.