The Nikola Motor Company, a Utah-based startup, has introduced a compressed natural gas-electric hybrid semi-truck, according to a Fox News report.
The truck, called the Nikola One, has been developed in secret for the past three years and features a 150-gallon dHybrid storage system stacked behind its cab that fuels a turbine generator, which charges a 320-kilowatt-hour battery pack that drives six motors.
It’s not a conversion vehicle. The truck’s chassis was engineered specifically for the project and features a unique independent rear suspension system designed in conjunction with automotive component supplier Meritor.
The series-hybrid drivetrain puts out 2,000 hp and 3,700 lb-ft of torque, Milton said in an interview, and it gets 10-15 mpg – about twice the fuel economy of a typical 500 hp, 1,650 lb-ft diesel tractor. As with most hybrid and electric vehicles, it has regenerative brakes that charge the batteries on downhill stretches, helping contribute to its claimed 800-1,200 mile range between fill-ups.
The plan is for Nikola to build a nationwide network of refueling stations to support its customers, similar to Tesla’s electric supercharger network. Nikola owns its own CNG wells and will sell the fuel for the equivalent of $1.50 per gallon, but the first 5,000 buyers of the $375,000 truck will get 1 million miles’ worth for free.
The full story is available here.