Tesla’s rival Nikola is planning hydrogen charging stations for his trucks in the UK and across Europe.
In an interview, founder and executive chairman Trevor Milton said that 50 charging stations have been planned across Europe, including in the UK.
Headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, Nikola’s value exceeded $ 30 billion (£ 24 billion) last month after going public, making it more valuable than many established auto manufacturers, despite having no sales or revenue.
Milton, a serial entrepreneur who founded Nikola in 2014, said that Europe is a better market than the United States for its line of hydrogen powered trucks.
“It is more profitable than America because of the high cost of diesel and all toll fees and tariffs.
“Let’s say you’re 10-20% cheaper here than America than diesel, in Europe it would be 40% cheaper,” he said.
The company plans to build its trucks in a plant in Ulm, Germany, as part of a partnership with the Italian manufacturer Iveco, starting in early 2021.
The company says its European charging stations are expected to be online in 2022 and will cover most of Europe by 2030.
The lack of charging infrastructure has been a key barrier for other companies that have attempted to build and sell hydrogen powered vehicles. Nikola says his vehicles will have twice as much autonomy as a comparable battery-powered truck.
Milton also said plans were made for the sale of the company’s badger, pickup truck, in parts of Europe.
“In some areas, it doesn’t make any sense because the streets are too narrow, too difficult to park a truck. In some markets in Europe, a normal American pickup is totally viable. But it’s not in all markets, “he said.