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The End to Diesel Truck Transport? Nikola Technology Plans on It

Semi-trucks are critical to the nation's transportation infrastructure. No one will argue with that. But debates do rise when it comes to the most efficient fuels and engines and their cost to pull thousands of pounds of goods or materials across the plains and over the various mountain ranges in this great land.

Diesel engines have lead the way as workhorses since the early days of automobiles and after steam locomotives gave way to diesel for power and long distance. One company is out to change that and please both environmentally-conscious groups and the transportation industry.

The Arizona-based startup, Nikola Motor, touts its mission to transform the transportation industry and make the world a better place, as shown in their company's mission statement. Can't do that with a continued reliance on diesel, apparently. So at the April Nikola World 2019 event, the four-year-old maker of hydrogen-based tractor trailers unveiled its Nikola Two and Nikola Tre hydrogen-electric semi trucks along with other new emissions-free vehicles. However, once in production the company plans to make battery-only editions available to purchase as well. 

In a sort of Tesla-duplicated business model, Nikola envisions a roll out of thousands of hydrogen-powered big rigs and building the coast-to-coast refueling stations to power them. According to a recent Forbes article, it also wants to influence other car and truck makers such as Toyota, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai and Daimler, to push their hydrogen fuel cell vehicle sales beyond the borders of California when the station network is in place.

The company's website makes clear that hydrogen-fueled semis clearly meet or exceed expectations when compared to diesel-only or battery-only rigs. "With an estimated range of 500-750 miles between fill ups, you can take the Nikola Truck as far as diesels and more than twice the distance of comparable battery only vehicles," the website explains.

The future of the trucking industry is changing and nationwide emissions-free trucking is closer than you might think. Hopefully it will be as affordable soon as it is exciting to anticipate. If your company would like to learn more about the outlook of hydrogen-based semis and how Michigan Truck Sales & Equipment is preparing for the future of efficient transportation, contact us today.


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