Faraday Future, the California-based electric vehicle firm that has come close to going bankrupt far too many times to count, has finally produced a vehicle.
The business staged a gathering on Wednesday to commemorate the completion of its first “production intent” FF91, an ultra-luxury electric SUV that has been under development for nearly eight years. Since combining with a special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, in July 2021, Faraday Future — which now goes by Faraday Future Intelligent Electric — maintains it is still on track to formally begin production of the FF91 in the third quarter of 2022.
It’s a watershed moment for the company, which has seen significant turnover, flirted with bankruptcy on multiple occasions, and still managed to pull itself back from the brink. In reality, the business is referring to it as “Milestone #4” of seven that will eventually lead to the “start of production” of the FF91.
Faraday Future has, of course, produced automobiles in the past. At the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show, there was the iconic “Batmobile,” a static concept car. Then there was the pre-production version of the FF91, which nearly gave me whiplash the next year when I rode in it.
It was in that year, 2017, when Faraday Future’s fortunes began to plummet. A $1 billion facility in the Nevada desert was announced, but it was never built. It began to lose both money and personnel. It placed up for sale its own headquarters. Emergency investors appeared, only to become embroiled in legal conflicts with Faraday Future over the funds.
After finding a new CEO, Jia Yueting filed for personal bankruptcy, and the firm saw an opportunity to take advantage of the new money streaming into the EV startup market by combining with a SPAC and going public, the company decided to merge with a SPAC and go public. It’s been quite a ride. (And it’s not finished yet: the business just stated that an internal inquiry had discovered multiple instances of false statements, prompting yet another leadership change.) (All of you!)
Now that its first automobile has been delivered, the company is focusing on the most crucial aspect of its business: marketing. Faraday Future is launching a “multi-channel communication campaign” named “Born in California,” as well as a “ieMedals campaign” to thank its suppliers and contract manufacturers.
I know what you’re thinking: “Wow, that sounds really cool.” “How do I get my own ieMedal?” you might wonder. I’m glad you inquired. “Users on the FF Intelligent App can earn supplier ieMedals for their individual accounts by completing particular actions or achieving co-creation challenge requirements,” according to Faraday Future. The ieMedals are digital prizes that may be added to users’ FFID profiles on the FF Intelligent App.”
So, essentially, it’s an NFT? It’s unclear whether these electronic rewards will be stored on the blockchain, but I wouldn’t rule out Faraday Future pulling such a bizarre prank. You wild jewels, keep shining.