DreamDrive is Lucid’s version of Tesla’s Autopilot. But unlike Tesla’s Autopilot with Full-Self Driving, which costs an extra $8,000, it’ll come standard in every Lucid Air from the new electric carmaker.
The advanced driving system in Lucid’s four-door luxury all-electric sedan will help drivers on the highway, while parking, and in unsafe situations. For example, it’ll detect drowsy or distracted driving and alert drivers.
Eventually its eye-tracking software will let highway drivers let go of the wheel, something General Motor’s Super Cruise system can already do. While Lucid and GM use eye-tracking, Tesla’s system uses sensors on the steering wheel to make sure you’re still paying attention to what’s happening. But as seen with actor Jamie Foxx’s recent Tesla test drive, you don’t have to be looking at the road for Autopilot to stay engaged as long as you touch the wheel enough.
When the Air starts delivering in early 2021, DreamDrive will need to catch up to Autopilot in one major way. Teslas with the more comprehensive Autopilot package can accelerate, change lanes, and exit on their own with an attentive driver sitting at the wheel on certain highways and major roads. Plus, Tesla claims its Full-Self Driving version is autonomous-capable, meaning that one day no driver will be necessary to touch the wheel or take over. Lucid’s system will eventually be programmed to drive on highways with the driver still paying attention and ready to take over, so not fully autonomous.
The new EV will come with a 32 sensor, radar, camera, and LiDAR light-measuring system that provides 19 advanced driving features with eight more expected through over-the-air updates. Elon Musk is known for dismissing LiDAR sensors as unnecessary for self-driving capabilities and instead favors cameras to see what’s happening around the car.
For now DreamDrive will offer features like blind spot detection, traffic sign detection, automatic emergency braking, autonomous parking and pull-out assistance, lane centering, and adaptive cruise control on highways. Tesla’s features are similar, although Musk keeps all blind-spot alerts on the dashboard touchscreen instead of on a blinking side mirror or with an auditory or haptic vibration to warn the driver about a car when changing lanes.
The Air is expected to have a 400-mile battery range and start at $60,000. Tesla’s Model S has a 402-mile range and starts at $75,000. The least expensive Tesla is the base Model 3 with 250-mile range and a $38,000 price tag.
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The Lucid Air will be revealed at an online event in September after the coronavirus outbreak pushed back its planned April debut at the New York International Auto Show.