Lordstown Motors delays Endurance EV pickup production due to supplier issues, shares fall

Lordstown Motors delays Endurance EV pickup production due to supplier issues, shares fall

The Lordstown Motors Corp. Endurance electric pickup truck sits on stage during an unveiling event in Lordstown, Ohio, U.S., on Thursday, June 25, 2020.

Matthew Hatcher | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Commercial production and deliveries of Lordstown Motors’ first product, an all-electric pickup called the Endurance, are once again being pushed back, the company said Thursday.

The embattled EV start-up said commercial production is now expected to start in the third quarter of next year compared to the second quarter, due to an ongoing global issue with auto supplier and supply chains. It’s the latest delay for the pickup, which was initially expected to begin production roughly a year ago.

“This is a modest delay from earlier expectations as component and material shortages, along with other supply chain challenges, remain an issue for Lordstown Motors just as they are for the industry at large,” Lordstown CEO Dan Ninivaggi said in the company’s third-quarter financial results release.

The pre-revenue company’s reported loss of 54 cents a share for the third quarter was slightly narrower than the loss of 59 cents per share anticipated by analysts, according to estimates compiled by Refinitiv.

Shares of the Ohio-based automaker remain volatile. The stock is down nearly 80% from its 52-week high of $31.57. Shares fell by 10% during afterhours trading Thursday, after gaining 24% for the day to close at $6.89 a share.

The stock’s performance Thursday was its best trading day on a percentage basis in roughly a year. It was driven by Lordstown’s plans, which were confirmed Wednesday, to sell its massive Ohio plant to Foxconn. The sale is part of a larger deal where iPhone maker Foxconn will assemble electric pickups for the cash-strapped company.

The deal was initially announced in September. It will provide capital for Lordstown, while giving Foxconn a jump start to producing EVs. Foxconn also has a deal with start-up Fisker to produce EVs in the coming years.

“Our goal is to become a capital light, engineering, design and development company focused on producing multiple all-electric vehicle programs,” Ninivaggi told investors during a call Thursday. “In Foxconn, we gain a great partner that has a vision of an all-EV future and the resources to build a global vehicle engineering and manufacturing footprint.”

Parts of the plant are yet to be completed for production of the Endurance, according to Ninivaggi.

Even so, he said Lordstown started assembling pre-production Endurance models for testing and validation during the third quarter. It expects to continue building the trucks through at least the first quarter of next year.

Aside from its financial troubles, Lordstown is under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission and Department of Justice regarding its deal to go public as well as potentially false or misleading statements from former management, including former CEO and founder Steve Burns.

Burns and his CFO left the SPAC-backed company in June after an internal investigation found “issues regarding the accuracy of certain statements” around Lordstown’s preorders, specifically the seriousness of the orders and who was making them.