The short-selling firm Hindenburg Research has accused startup electric truck-maker Lordstown Motors of faking pre-order numbers. In a new report published by the firm, it said that the electric-vehicle startup exaggerated numbers to generate interest of investors. This in turn will aid in raising funds for the electric vehicle manufacturer. Following the footsteps of other electric vehicle startups, Lordstown too went public in October last year through a special-purpose acquisition company. The latest claim by Hindenburg Research comes after exposing intricate fraud being done by Nikola Motor Company. Lordstown has refuted the claims and said that it will be releasing a full and thorough statement on the claims made by the short-selling firm.
Founded in 2018, Lordstown plans to produce the Endurance. It is a commercial pickup truck for fleet use and will be manufactured at a shuttered GM plant in Lordstown, Ohio. Lordstown Motors chief executive officer Steve Burns said that they have received over 100,000 pre-orders. Burns said that the numbers are enough to keep its upcoming factory in Ohio busy for at least one year as and when the production begins. But Hindenburg in its report claimed that the numbers quoted by the company are non-binding. Hindenburg, in its report titled ‘The Lordstown Motors Mirage,’ said that only a few of those customers are actually planning to buy such an expensive truck.
The report went on to say that some of the supposed customers do not even seem to be financially strong enough to make such a multi-million dollar purchase even if they are willing to. “Lordstown is an electric vehicle SPAC that has almost zero revenue and no sellable product. We believe the startup has misled investors on both the fronts, demand as well as production capabilities,” the report said. Hindenburg said that it had detailed conversations with multiple people who are holders of Lordstown pre-order. The report also says that the EV startup is much further away from the production that it actually claims. Citing a former employee, the report said that the production will begin at least in three to four years.