For those that missed our eNewsLetter special on Thursday night local time in Salt Lake City, Trevor Milton in front of 600 invited guests and media, revealed to the world the first Nikola One Hydrogen Electric fully functioning prototype truck.
His opening statement, beamed around the world, was profound. He used Oren Harari’s quote: “The electric light bulb did not come from continuous improvement of candles.”
The result of 10 years of development, there’s now no doubt the Nikola One exists. The truck on the stage is the prototype and unit two, which will be a step ahead of unit one, will be the first of the units subjected to three years on-field testing under the refiner’s fire. Pre-orders have just crept past $4 billion and Nikola announced earlier today a deal with Ryder Lease and Maintenance for sales and servicing of the Nikola trucks. But the night was still not over. The latest part of the Nikola vertical solution will include Nikola Shipments, a RIO style freight matching and optimisation tool built into every new Nikola.
Final plans for the assembly plant, estimated to cost $1 billion dollars, will be announced mid- 2017, and the first of the 364 refuelling stations is due to kick off in 2019. That may not sound a lot in a country as vast as the USA, but with a 1200-mile range per fuelling, it’s more than ample.
Building the first 5,000 trucks will be the job of Fitzgerald of Fitzgerald Glider Kit fame. Fitzgerald build about 6,000 to 9,000 trucks a year currently and are a Nikola investment partner. The full- blown Nikola manufacturing facility is due to come on stream in four to five years.
This is most definitely a ‘watch this space’ situation …
Scroll to the bottom for footage of the telecast as it happened.
Dave McCoid, Editor