Electric vehicle start-up Lordstown Motors said that early reservations for its all-electric Endurance pickup were strong and that it plans to double hiring by the end of this year, sending shares of the company up by as much as 27% Monday.
The company said it has received about 50,000 nonbinding production reservations for the vehicle, which is tailored for commercial buyers rather than individual owners. The average order size of the reservations is approximately 500 vehicles, according to a press release.
Shares of Lordstown closed at $22.55, up 26%. The company has a market cap of $3.7 billion. It went public through a special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, last month. Lordstown's stock has been volatile since going public on Oct.26.
"We continue to make significant progress across all fronts, and we are excited to reveal these developments with the investment community and future customers today," Lordstown CEO Steve Burns said in a statement.
Lordstown said deliveries of the Endurance are expected to begin in September 2021, with full production ramping up throughout 2022. The company expects to produce 40 to 50 new, or "beta," prototype vehicles beginning in early 2021. The trucks will be used for crash, engineering and validation testing, according to Lordstown.
The company said it is in the process of doubling its employees to 500 by the end of this year, followed by 1,500 people by the end of 2021.
Ohio-based Lordstown is among a growing group of electric vehicle start-ups going public through deals with SPACs, which have become a popular way of raising money on Wall Street because they have a more streamlined regulatory process than traditional initial public offerings. SPAC stocks typically get an initial pop after the deal is announced but tend to underperform the broader market in the long run, according to Goldman Sachs.