As its cope with Basic Motors stays in limbo, Nikola Motors executives this week talked up reverting to a “base plan,” and dropping the Badger electrical pickup truck GM was to assist launch.
Nikola first mentioned constructing hydrogen fuel-cell semi vans—and a community of hydrogen stations for them—earlier than unveiling the Badger, a battery-electric truck with what is basically a fuel-cell vary extender.
In a deal introduced final month, GM was to build the Badger and provide fuel-cell tech, in change for a stake in Nikola and different monetary advantages. That deal was scheduled to shut by September 30, however negotiations are nonetheless ongoing, Nikola CEO Mark Russell stated in an interview with Bloomberg Thursday, including that the corporate is ready to go it alone.
“We now have the flexibility and we have now a base plan for doing it ourselves,” Russell stated.
Nikola had deliberate to rely closely on companions to fabricate its autos, however that is been sophisticated by accusations in a short-seller’s report final month that former CEO Trevor Milton (who has since stepped down) made fraudulent claims about Nikola’s know-how. The corporate and Milton have denied these accusations.
In a separate interview with the Financial Times, Russell additionally downplayed the significance of the Badger, which is definitely the mannequin that almost all stoked traders and firm curiosity. The Badger was first proven as a sequence of renderings on Twitter by Milton to troll Tesla CEO Elon Musk after the Cybertruck unveiling, and it seemingly benefited from a few of the hype surrounding the Tesla electrical truck.
“Our core marketing strategy since earlier than we grew to become publicly listed at all times centered on heavy vans and hydrogen infrastructure,” Russell stated.
Nikola canceled the occasion at which the Badger was due to be introduced, though the corporate stated that was because of coronavirus-related restrictions on giant gatherings in Arizona, the place the occasion was to be held.
In July, Nikola broke floor on an Arizona facility that is because of assemble commercial fuel-cell trucks. The primary Nikola vans can be constructed by truck maker IVECO in Germany, nonetheless.
These vans could be depending on a Nikola’s proposed hydrogen network—which might show to be the costliest and sophisticated portion of Nikola’s plan.