Ohio-based EV manufacturer Lordstown Motors (RIDE) has hit another roadblock in its quest to bring its Endurance electric pickup to market. After several years of waiting, Lordstown says Endurance EV buyers will have to wait a little longer after announcing it will pause production amid a voluntary recall.
The news comes as a significant blow to Lordstown, which seemed to finally be getting on track after working tirelessly to bring its electric truck to market.
After going public on the NASDAQ exchange in 2020, many saw Lordstown as a promising young EV start-up with potential in the electric pickup segment. However, the excitement quickly faded after several costly mishaps, including an early prototype that caught fire in early 2021.
Things worsened after Lordstown’s CEO and CFO abruptly resigned in June 2021, sparking questions about the company’s ability to carry on.
Shortly after and in desperate need of cash, Lordstown announced it was selling its Ohio assembly plant to Taiwanese manufacturing giant Foxconn, hoping it would spark life in the company and finally get the Endurance electric truck moving through production.
Despite the sale, Lordstown claimed it needed another $50 to $75 million to scale production on its second-quarter earnings as Foxconn stepped in again to revamp the program.
With the additional investment, Lordstown was able to begin production with the initial batch of 500 Endurance EV trucks leaving the plant last November. After several months of silence from Lordstown, the company is now issuing a voluntary recall as it pauses Endurance EV production.
Lordstown pauses Endurance EV production amid recall
Lordstown announced through a press release today it has experienced performance and quality issues with specific Endurance components that have led the company to halt production and deliveries.
The company is working with its suppliers to find the cause of the issue and potential solutions, which Lordstown says may include “design modifications, retrofits, and software updates.”
Lordstown has filed paperwork with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to voluntarily recall the Endurance EV truck, citing “a specific electrical connection issue that could result in loss of propulsion while driving.”
The company’s CEO and president, Edward Hightower, commented on the situation, saying:
While our experienced team has made significant progress in addressing the underlying component and vehicle sub-system issues affecting the Endurance build schedule, we remain committed to doing the right thing by our customers and to resolve potential issues before resuming production and customer shipments.
The recall affects 19 Endurance EVs that are either already delivered or used by Lordstown. Lordstown says it will provide a more detailed update on its upcoming earnings call on March 6, 2023.
A recall at this stage is not a good look for Lordstown after already having its fair share of issues getting the truck to production.
Lordstown’s stock is down over 10% today on the news. The next few months will be crucial for Lordstown as they work to regain investor and consumer confidence in the brand. Whether the company will be able to overcome the challenges and claim its position in the rapidly expanding EV market remains to be seen.