Trevor Milton, CEO of Nikola Motor Company. “Anheuser-Busch has a long history of investing in progressive, sustainable technology and we are excited to partner with them to bring the largest hydrogen network in the world to the USA. By 2028, we anticipate having over 700 hydrogen stations across the USA and Canada. With nearly 9 billion dollars in pre-order reservations, we are building to order, not speculation, and are very excited for what’s to come.”
I think Hydrogen fuel cells make more sense for trucks. Trucks live at, arrive and depart depots so you can concentrate fueling stations. And you can get huge range out of a hydrogen fuel cell that allows great efficiency.
I see hydrogen fuel cells being a natural replacement for heavy diesel machinery and pure electric for traditional gasoline vehicles.
Hydrogen's biggest problem is the fixed infrastructure that just simply isnt there aside from all the well rehearsed arguments about safety, overall CO2 footprint, use of rare earth metals etc etc.
It is possible however that for certain repetitive routes infrastructure could be put in place.
However you are then looking at extremely limited use = low quantity = high prices.
I would guess the Elon was aware of the possibility of hydrogen gaining limited traction in the Class8 market which is why he is launching the Semi to prove that battery power is entirely feasible even for 40 tonne trucks. Vans and everything in between then becomes a no brainer but they're low margin mass markets that Tesla can willingly leave to others.
I have been watching the Nikola effort with some skepticism. If memory serves, they were going to do the electric tractor but have switched to the H2 idea. I think the story is still unfolding.
As an owner of a half dozen diesel tractors, but also an "S" and "X" I am convinced the market is headed to electric. The number of items necessary for clean operation of today's diesels whose only purpose is to reduce emissions or heat is considerable. Think about it, a giant fan, with a clutch and v-belts, air coolers, oil coolers, radiator, DEF tanks, afterburners for soot, exhaust stacks and on and on. Those are all things that electric avoids, but many of which the hydrogen unit will still require.
All of the Class 8 truck mfrs are working on an electric solution including Paccar. They are all sort of dipping their toes in the water with tentative steps like keeping the same transmissions as the oil fired units. I suspect there is considerable internal discussion about how much change is too much. I would also bet the dealers are terrified at the prospect of service revenue nearly disappearing.
We own and operate an electric terminal tractor, OrangeEv, look it up. It runs all day every day, silently. There is no fuel or DEF, or radiator etc. It has a battery pack just about the same size as a Tesla and the propulsion is from a motor a little bigger than a beer keg. When we show it to the Pete and Mack sales guys you can see them shudder.
Tesla is starting with the clean sheet. I think it is promising and I look forward to buying them soon!
I am a four time customer but not a stockholder or a "short".
I had a look on their website which says the saving of Electric over Diesel is 90%. In UK / EU tax on fuel is expensive, so significant savings for Electric ... but I thought in USA the differential was much much less.
How does the 90% saving come about? Maybe that type of vehicle is doing running-about work, and is stationary a large portion of the time with the engine left running?