Nikola Motors, a Utah-based startup developing electric vehicles and hydrogen fuel cell trucks, announced that it secured $100 million as part of a $200 million series C round of funding that it is planning to close this month.
The money will be used to bring its electric vehicles and hydrogen trucks to market.
Last year, the company announced that it is moving to Arizona to build new headquarters and a manufacturing facility to produce its vehicles.
The money will be put toward that project.
Nikola CEO Trevor Milton said this week in a press release about the new financing round:
“Nikola’s business model has been vetted, and the investment world is taking notice. So far this year we have kicked-off plans to build the largest hydrogen network in the world with NEL, secured a massive 800-truck order commitment from Anheuser-Busch, developed the most energy dense battery system on the market with almost 400 watt hours per liter, engineered a 240 kW fuel cell, kicked-off electric vehicle stability controls and electric ABS with WABCO, designed a thermo-management and HVAC system with MAHLE, finalized the most advanced class-8 independent suspension on the market with Meritor, relocated our company to Arizona to build our new 150,000 sq. ft. headquarters and now closed on $100,000,000,”
In order to support its planned deployment of hydrogen trucks, the company also has an ambitious plan to have hundreds of hydrogen stations across North America with the first 14 stations in operation by 2021.
I’m torn about Nikola Motors because I’m a big fan of their battery-electric vehicle projects since I’ve tried their insane electric UTV last year.
But I’m not really on board with their plans for hydrogen fuel cell trucks.
I think that by the time their trucks will be ready and they deploy hydrogen stations and the entire infrastructure required to produce the hydrogen to fuel those trucks, battery-electric semi trucks will have already surpassed them in performance and cost.
As for efficiency, which is the actual problem that battery-electric and hydrogen trucks are trying to solve, there’s no doubt that batteries are much more efficient than powering vehicles with hydrogen.
On top of that, Nikola sued Tesla over the ridiculous claims that they copied their semi truck design for the Tesla Semi, which basically amounts to a patent trolling suit as we previously discussed.
That’s why I’m torn. I see Nikola doing a lot of things I completely disagree with but I also very much like the battery-electric vehicles they are working on right now through their motorsport division.
What do you think? Let us know in the comment section below.