Nikola Motor Company founder and CEO Trevor Milton pulled the wraps off his company’s much-discussed baby, the Nikola One semi truck. Large and imposing, the Nikola One promises to be a game changer if the company is able to keep its production, infrastructure, and pricing claims.
Powered by a hydrogen fuel cell powerplant that provides energy to six in-wheel electric motors, the Nikola One reputedly has a 1,200-mile driving range with 1,000 hp and 2,000 lb-ft of torque. The company has plans to open 364 hydrogen refueling stations across the country to provide coast-to-coast, border-to-border range for its trucks, and lessees of the Nikola One will have access to 1 million miles’ worth of free hydrogen. That could mean around 10 years of free fuel for most trucks, which will outlast the truck’s seven-year lease.
In addition to revealing the Nikola One, the company also announced plans for the Nikola Two, a day-cab alternative to its bigger, sleeper-cab sister. Using a similar propulsion system, the Nikola Two will be ideal for local and regional deliveries, and it opens the door for vocational trucks in the future. The company is now taking reservations on Nikolas One and Two for $1,500, and to date, Nikola has raised nearly $3 billion in preorders.
The company also announced a new logistics program called Nikola Shipments. Milton explained the system as a sort of long-haul cargo Uber, with potential customers registering their shipments and Nikola drivers accepting cargo as desired. Nikola says drivers can set their starting point and destination, and Nikola Shipments will build a route based on cargo need, weather conditions, and other factors. Shipments will be controlled via a massive 21-inch touchscreen display in the cab.
Perhaps the most significant announcement made last night, aside from the Nikola One itself, was the partnership between Nikola Motor Company and Ryder Systems. The logistics giant will provide maintenance and service to drivers under Nikola’s warranty, which will last the duration of the company’s seven-year leasing program. Speaking of leasing, interested parties can plan to spend between $5,000 and $7,000 monthly on the Nikola One, which will include fuel and servicing.
Appearing in the flesh for the first time in public, the Nikola One was revealed in front of an audience that included Utah Governor Gary Herbert and other local representatives, plus logistics industry big shots, friends of the company, and the press. It was warmly received, with logistics experts expressing interest in the zero-emissions, zero-cost fuel, provided Nikola can build an infrastructure. We’re looking forward to finding out the same, as we’d love to see these futuristic machines on our roads soon. The company has a goal to get its first trucks on the road in 2020.