Last month, we reported on a new Salt Lake City-based startup, Nikola Motor, unveiling the design of its first product; an electric truck with a natural gas range extender called ‘Nikola One’. The company attracted a lot of attention for having a name reminiscent of Tesla Motors – both inspired by the physicist Nikola Tesla – but it also unveiled serious ambitions to revolutionize the trucking industry.
The ‘Nikola One’ will be equipped with a massive 320 kWh battery pack and the company hopes that it will be able to travel up to 1,200 miles with the natural gas range extender. Now the company announced that it received over 7,000 pre-orders with deposits for its electric truck since the unveiling of the concept last month. CEO Trevor Milton says that the pre-orders are worth over $2.3 billion.
The company made the announcement in a press release this morning. Milton said:
“Our technology is 10-15 years ahead of any other OEM in fuel efficiencies, MPG and emissions. We are the only OEM to have a near zero emission truck and still outperform diesel trucks running at 80,000 pounds. To have over 7,000 reservations totaling more than 2.3 billion dollars, with five months remaining until our unveiling ceremony, is unprecedented,”
Nikola Motor only released some renderings and details of the Nikola One concept, but an actual prototype will only be unveiled at an event in December 2016.
Here’s what the company released about the vehicle so far:
- 6X6 100% Electric drive
- Zero idle
- Many times cleaner than diessel engines
- 1/2 the fuel cost per mile compared to diessel
- 3,700 FT. LBS Torque
- 2,000 Horsepower
- 1,200 Miles range
- 320 kWh Battery
- 1 million miles fuel free
- Regenarative braking
- Never plug-in – Turbine charges batteries automatically while driving
It was designed by the former Chief Designer of Isuzu’s commercial truck division, Steve Jennes, who is now Chief Designer at Nikola Motor.
They want to create both special lease program for truck drivers and a network of CNG stations. The program would cost up to $5,000 a month which would include the lease payment, unlimited miles, unlimited fuel, warranty and maintenance.
In order to make the concept a reality, the startup will need a lot of money. In a press release, the company says that it completed a seed round of investing and that it is working on a series A round worth $300 million to be completed by the time they unveil the prototype in December.
We will be following Nikola Motor’s progress here on Electrek, but at this stage, we are managing our expectations.