Nikola Corporation has been hard at work redesigning semi trucks to be all-electric EVs or powered by clean hydrogen. Their new line of sustainable trucks comes at the perfect time, when emissions laws for heavy duty trucks are finally changing and the auto industry and trucking industry are moving to shift to cleaner modes of transport.
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Take the BEV, Nikola’s answer to the standard semi truck used for shipping goods across country. The BEV has a range of 330 miles, can go up to 70 miles per hour, and can charge in 90 minutes. That’s not that different from a standard diesel semi, while still able to offer 645 horsepower.
Related: Tesla semi truck is finally here: does it make the grade?
Additionally, Nikola makes a fuel-cell truck called the FCEV, as well as energy infrastructure solutions, in a bid to create a total solution for logistics companies needing cleaner transport solutions. Hydrogen fueling infrastructure requires high-pressure storage of hydrogen fuel. We can imagine Nikola creating truck station add-ons that include fast-charging electric truck charging stations and hydrogen fueling stations for their fleets of clean trucks.
Founded in 2015, Nikola Corporation already has manufacturing facilities in Germany and over 1,500 employees. That means this is much more than a two-founder startup at this point, and the company has the means to accomplish what it set out to do: green logistics. This January, Nikola launched the first hydrogen fuel cell truck mobile fueler, moved their battery manufacturing to Arizona and sold EV trucks to PGT Trucking. It’s a company solidly on their way to making a dent in heavy duty truck emissions.
Why create EVs and fuel cell trucks? The Nikola FCEV allows for a longer range of 500 miles, can refuel in 20 minutes, has zero tailpipe emissions and still offers 536 horsepower. As the battery and motor technology becomes more efficient, we expect to see these kinds of trucks offering range and power on par with traditional diesel trucks, but this is already an acceptable alternative for companies wanting to curb emissions.
It’s the recharging and refueling infrastructure that needs to be there to make this work for logistics companies. That’s why Nikola offers mobile fueling stations while they work out more permanent infrastructure across the U.S. and the world. If you’re looking for a heavy duty truck that’s an EV or fuel cell, especially in a fleet, this is a fantastic new option for greening your operations and cutting fuel costs. The trucks even come with generous incentive discounts.
Images via Nikola Motors