May 10, 2017 1:20 PM, EDT

Nikola Motor Co. Outlines Progress on Hydrogen-Electric Class 8

Nikola Motor Co.

Nikola Motor Co. is considering several changes related to its planned hydrogen electric Class 8 trucks, the company told those who have made reservations and placed refundable deposits. Those changes include chassis design and leasing options.

The update came in the form of letter released in April and signed by Nikola CEO Trevor Milton. It arrived four months after the company’s Dec. 1 unveiling of its Nikola One zero-emissions Class 8 over-the-road truck in Salt Lake City.

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Nikola also is developing the Nikola Two, a day cab model.

New pricing options are under consideration for those who lease the trucks, the company wrote.

For example, Nikola may offer to bill operators on a price-per-mile basis, including a minimum yearly mileage, instead of a fixed lease price, according to the company. It estimated this option could lower the cost of ownership by as much as 30%, compared with a diesel-fueled Class 8.

“We anticipate pricing specifics related to this option to be available for review by drivers in early 2019,” the company wrote.

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Meanwhile, the company wrote that its “next series of prototypes” will be ready for road testing before the end of 2018. Those trucks will use hydrogen to replenish the battery-charging fuel cell.

Also, the company reported that the next version of its trucks for testing with certain fleets will include refinements such as changes to the chassis to reduce weight and size, provide better visibility, increase storage and lower the fifth wheel.