Let’s do the joke first: Hydrogen’s the fuel of the future, they say. And it always will be.
Because for all the upsides—combining zero emissions driving with the ease of refueling in just a few minutes—hydrogen fuel cells have gotten approximately nowhere. It’s the chicken and egg thing: No one wants to buy a car without a refueling infrastructure to back it up, and no one wants to build those hydrogen stations without customers to serve.
Now, a startup truck manufacturer has big plans to change that by taking a lesson from Elon Musk, and providing both pollo and heuvo. And, if it can convince truckers to try out a new kind of driving, it mightfinally deliver the future of hydrogen that always seems to be in transit, never arriving.
Last week, the Nikola Motor Company (rhymes withRicola) unveiled the Nikola One, an 18-wheeler powered by a 320-kWh battery (Tesla’s most capable car gets 100 kWh) with a hydrogen fuel cell generator that keeps it charged on the road. Tanked up, the truck will have up to 1,200 miles of range, along with the performance benefits of electric propulsion,likepiles of torque and a low center of gravity.