Nikola unveils the Nikola Badger ute

3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineFebruary 12, 2020

Nikola Corporation has launched the Nikola Badger electric ute with an estimated range of 965km.

The Badger will be built in conjunction with another OEM, utilising their certified parts and manufacturing facilities, and will make its first appearance at Nikola World 2020 in September.

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

It is designed to handle 0-160kph launches with minimal loss of performance and to operate on grades up to 40% through advanced software blending of batteries and fuel cell. With a fully loaded trailer and combined vehicle weight of 8164kg, 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 programme, so why not build it into a pick-up truck?” said Trevor Milton, CEO, Nikola Corporation. “I have been working on this pick-up programme 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. This electric truck can be used for work, weekend getaways, towing, off-roading or to hit the ski slopes without performance loss. No other electric ute can operate in these temperatures and conditions.”

Heavy D, a reality TV star from the Diesel Brothers, has partnered with Nikola to design, build and test the Badger in real world environments, which is anticipated to attract millions of viewers and followers through the process. The partnership will follow the Badger build from concept through production.

Nikola Corporation president Mark Russell says the Nikola Badger is a game changer.

“The programme will help drive down the cost of the fuel cell components on our semi-truck while accelerating the hydrogen station rollout. Giving customers the option to order a fuel cell or battery electric version will ensure we drive the cost down for everyone across our line-up.”

The Badger‘s specs claim it can accelerate to 96.5km/h in 2.9 seconds, do 965km on combined FCEV/BEV, 482km range on BEV only, produce a peak 675.6kW (906hp) power, 1328.7Nm of torque, has advanced supercapacitor launch assist blending lithium ion and fuel cell, and can tow about 3.6 tonnes.

The five-seat ute is 5.9 metres long, 1.85m high, 2.16m wide, and has a 1.56m tray width.