Nikola Motor Company, the startup automaker better known for its plans for a hydrogen-electric semi, has announced the product launch of the Nikola Badger electric pickup, according to a statement by Nikola on June 10.

The Badger will be available as a battery-electric (BEV) or fuel cell-electric (FCEV) model. Customers who initially bought the BEV model can later upgrade to the FCEV, as hydrogen infrastructure advances, according to Nikola.

The Badger will have an estimated range of 300 miles as a BEV and 600 miles as an FCEV. It is estimated to deliver 980 ft. lbs. of torque with 906 peak HP and 455 continuous HP. Towing capacity is slated to be 8,000 lbs.

The Badger will be built in conjunction “with another OEM utilizing their certified parts and manufacturing facilities,” the statement said.

The Badger will be outfitted with a 15-kilowatt power outlet for tools, lights, and compressors, which will deliver enough power to assist a construction site for about 12 hours without a generator.

The Badger’s performance won’t suffer from payload or grade, according to Nikola. With a fully loaded trailer and combined vehicle weight of 18,000 lbs., Nikola estimates the Badger will be able to launch from a standstill on a 30% grade without motor stall.

“Nikola has billions worth of technology in our semi-truck program, so why not build it into a pickup truck?” said Trevor Milton, CEO, Nikola Corporation. “I have been working on this pickup program for years and believe the market is now ready for something that can handle a full day’s worth of work without running out of energy.”

In a bit of showmanship usually seen by Elon Musk, Milton contracted Heavy D, a reality TV star from the “Diesel Brothers,” to design, build, and test the Badger in real world environments.

Preorders for the Nikola Badger begin June 29. The truck will make its first appearance at Nikola World 2020 in Phoenix in November.

Nikola severed ties with Ryder last week. Since debuting as a public company last week, Nikola’s market valuation has surged to $31 billion, higher than Fiat Chrysler and Ford. The company has yet to sell a truck.

Originally posted on Fleet Forward





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