Nikola to Pause Battery-Electric Truck Production

Nikola to Pause Battery-Electrical Truck Manufacturing

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Nikola Corp. is about to pause battery-electric truck (BET) manufacturing at its Coolidge, Ariz., facility by the tip of Might forward of a pivot in its operations to hydrogen gas cell autos and a narrowing of its ambitions to only North America, the corporate stated Might 9.

Phoenix-based Nikola’s swing away from BETs comes as losses on the startup continued to rise within the first quarter of 2023 and executives try and gradual the corporate’s livid price of money burn. The corporate posted a web lack of $169.1 million, or 31 cents per diluted share, in the newest quarter, in contrast with a $152.9 million loss within the prior 12 months interval, it stated.

Nikola plans to retool the Coolidge facility forward of a scheduled manufacturing line restart in July, when BETs will solely be out there on a “build-to-order” foundation, CEO Michael Lohscheller stated through the firm’s quarterly earnings name Might 9.

Below Lohscheller, who formally took the reins of the corporate in the beginning of 2023, Nikola plans to slim its focus to North America, hydrogen gas cell electrical vehicles, its HYLA hydrogen refueling enterprise and autonomous applied sciences.

Earlier in Might, Nikola inked a cope with Herndon, Va.-based electrical and hydrogen fueling infrastructure specialist Voltera to develop as much as 50 HYLA hydrogen refueling stations. Voltera is backed by the deep pockets of Sweden funding group EQT.

The revamp may also see Nikola promoting its stake in a European Class 8 truck manufacturing three way partnership with Iveco Group to the Italian firm for $35 million money and 20.6 million shares, a deal introduced within the hours previous to the earnings assertion. Nikola plans to lift funds by promoting the shares, Chief Monetary Officer Stasy Pasterick stated through the firm’s earnings name.

Addressing Nikola’s money wants is a high precedence, Pasterick stated, noting that the corporate was concentrating on money burn of $150 million per quarter, down from $200 million 1 / 4 in 2022. Nikola’s April money burn was lower than $50 million, she added in a presentation.

Nikola is dropping cash on every BET it sells. The corporate produced 63 Tre BETs in the newest quarter and delivered 31 to sellers. The corporate’s Tre BET gross sales rose to 33 within the quarter, which it stated was a major enhance from 2022. Nonetheless, the corporate has ample BET stock to have the ability to pause manufacturing.

Lohscheller stated within the earnings assertion the corporate was constructing gross sales momentum and backlog for its hydrogen truck, including that orders for 140 have been acquired from 12 finish prospects. Hydrogen gas cell truck serial manufacturing is at the moment on schedule to start in July, he added. Hydrogen vehicles can be out there to prospects later in 2023, the corporate’s high government stated through the name.

“The way forward for Nikola is hydrogen,” Lohscheller stated on the decision, including that the upside within the U.S. and Canada was “limitless” resulting from authorities backing such because the Inflation Discount Act and the Division of Vitality’s loans for revolutionary automotive and clear vitality firms. Nikola is continuous to work on finishing Section 2 of the DOE Mortgage Program Workplace software course of, it stated.

Down the road, the corporate additionally hopes to provide inexperienced hydrogen, and Lohscheller stated Nikola continued to work intently with Australia’s Fortescue Future Industries on the event of large-scale U.S. inexperienced hydrogen manufacturing amenities.

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