Lordstown Motors Steps Up Marketing to Airports, Stock Rebounds

LORDSTOWN, Ohio — Lordstown Motors Corp. is pitching its all-electric Endurance pickup to a potentially lucrative market for fleet vehicles: U.S. airports.

The company demonstrated the Endurance’s capabilities earlier this week at the Northeast Chapter of the American Association of Airport Executives’ Annual Conference, at the Burlington Airport in Burlington, Vt., the company announced Friday.

The American Association of Airport Executives is the world’s largest professional organization for airport executives, representing thousands of airport management personnel at approximately 850 airports and hundreds of companies and organizations that support airports.

“As more airports sharpen their focus on reducing emissions and transitioning their on-ground equipment to electric, they need a reliable EV truck option that can be seamlessly integrated into their existing fleet,” said Cynthia Maves, Lordstown Motors’ interim head of sales. “The Endurance was quite popular in Burlington, drawing the attention of decision makers from airports nationwide. Our truck is our greatest asset, so anytime we can get it in front of the decision makers, it more than speaks for itself, proving why it’s an essential addition for fleets of all varieties.”

The Endurance was the only EV pickup truck featured at the show, which ran Aug. 15 through 17.

Shares of Lordstown Motors shot upward Friday morning, up more than 15% at 11:25 a.m. to $5.49. On Thursday, Lordstown Motors shares closed at a 52-week low of $4.77. 

Lordstown Motors has said it would begin limited production of the Endurance in late September, followed by validation and regulatory approval in December and early 2022. The company plans to make its first commercial fleet deliveries during the second quarter of 2022. 

Initially, the Endurance will be sold strictly to fleet customers, Lordstown Motors has said. 

Lordstown Motors’ appearance at Burlington is part of an ongoing marketing effort to showcase the Endurance across the country at trade shows and customer events that attract fleet owners and fleet management companies.

The Endurance will be featured at the National Association of Fleet Administrators Inc.’s Institute & Expo in Pittsburgh, scheduled Aug. 30 through Sept. 1. NAFA is a not-for-profit association for professionals who manage fleets of sedans, law enforcement vehicles, trucks, buses, as well as a wide range of military and off-road equipment for organizations.

As part of a broader marketing strategy, Lordstown Motors has also launched a new video on its YouTube channel promoting its workforce at its plant. The video profiles Dana Carlevale, a stamping production analyst at Lordstown Motors who was hired in Sept. 2020.  It is the first installment in a series “Real People – Making Real Trucks – In a Real Plant” that introduces employees and displays progress underway as the company gears up for the launch of the Endurance.

Carlevale’s grandfather was among the first hired at the Lordstown Assembly plant in the 1960s, when General Motors owned the factory. The automaker sold the plant to Lordstown Motors in 2019 after discontinuing production of the Chevrolet Cruze. 

“My grandfather was the 13th employee hired at this facility,” she says in the video. “It’s cool that through the generations that it’s still a part of my family.”

The company has struggled to maintain investor confidence since a short-seller report alleged in March that company executives misled investors by inflating preorders for the Endurance.

Lordstown Motors has come under additional pressure as a result of U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission investigations into its merger with a blank check company that brought it public last October. The investigations are also focusing on allegations related to preorders for the Endurance.

Copyright 2021 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.