Anyone considering the Nikola Badger alternative?

ThisGuyTalks

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I was talking with the Trevor a couple years back about coming to work for him. He wanted me to come down to the Phoenix area to interview. But after several email exchanges, I told him I was no longer interested in the position.

He was always trying to convince me he was right, even though I knew he was wrong. Why hire someone with 30 years of experience to teach you if you are going to ignore their expertise?

He ends up buying a $4.2M airplane when he could have had far more capability for much less money. But he wanted something he could fly himself, and he wanted brand new. All this time I am thinking "But your company hasn't even made a dime in profit?" That just doesn't seem responsible or trustworthy to me.
I don't know him or have ever met him, but he certainly seems like an "interesting" character. I've read through a number of his tweets and interviews and such and don't necessarily agree with how he interacts with others - it's just not how I would handle things if I were in his position. It doesn't make it right or wrong - just different than my personality. His airplane purchase seems along the same lines as his purchase of a $30+ mln estate/ranch.

He also recently tweeted a list of charities to which he had donated (which is great - don't get me wrong) but he also listed the names of families to whom he had donated. I just felt it a bit in poor taste to post the names of people who are struggling for the entire internet to see. Again, I am glad that he donated to these people and perhaps he had okay'd it with them to post their names, but it's just something that struck me as a bit out of touch.

That said, nobody is perfect and it's impossible for a public figure to conduct themselves in a way in which will make everyone happy. We all learn and grow and probably wish we'd have done some things differently in our lives. Hopefully, he is receptive to ideas from others and is able to build his company successfully.
 
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CappyJax

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I don't know him or have ever met him, but he certainly seems like an "interesting" character. I've read through a number of his tweets and interviews and such and don't necessarily agree with how he interacts with others - it's just not how I would handle things if I were in his position. It doesn't make it right or wrong - just different than my personality. His airplane purchase seems along the same lines as his purchase of a $30+ mln estate/ranch.

He also recently tweeted a list of charities to which he had donated (which is great - don't get me wrong) but he also listed the names of families to whom he had donated. I just felt it a bit in poor taste to post the names of people who are struggling for the entire internet to see. Again, I am glad that he donated to these people and perhaps he had okay'd it with them to post their names, but it's just something that struck me as a bit out of touch.

That said, nobody is perfect and it's impossible for a public figure to conduct themselves in a way in which will make everyone happy. We all learn and grow and probably wish we'd have done some things differently in our lives. Hopefully, he is receptive to ideas from others and is able to build his company successfully.
He does like to boast about what a great person he is.

Yes, posting the names of people he donated to is in very bad taste. Even if he asked them (which they would likely not refuse because they feel obligated) it is still pretty darn reprehensible.

It is a shame that we live in a world where narcissism rules. A rich person donates a tiny fraction of their wealth and they are hailed for it, while the working poor give money away they can't even afford to give to help others and no one notices.
 

electruck

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Running out of money.
I'm not a corporate finance guy but they raised, what, $700M or so in the reverse merger? That's still many billions short of what they're going to need to achieve their goals.
 

CappyJax

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I'm not a corporate finance guy but they raised, what, $700M or so in the reverse merger? That's still many billions short of what they're going to need to achieve their goals.
Yes, seems like it would take at least a couple billion to build and tool a production line for semis and build 700 hydrogen fuel stations around the country. They had $86 million at the end of 2019, but 14,000 reservations for trucks. But since the reservations are free, even I have one.

The biggest issue with the hydrogen is that it will cost 5 to 10 times as much as using the electricity directly in a BEV. First off, it takes at least twice the electricity to make the hydrogen, then the fuel cells are at best 60% efficient, and then you are charging the battery with the fuel cell which loses some efficiency, and then from the battery to the motor which loses more. And all of this doesn't account for the far more expensive hydrogen production and storage system needed to be built.

The Tesla semi energy cost is expected to be around $0.24(2,000Wh x $0.12/kWh) per mile. The best case scenario for the Nikola I would estimate is around $1.25/mile. Well, a diesel truck at $3 per gallon and 6 MPG is only $0.50/mile.

Both Nikola and Tesla have a problem with recharging stations. However, it is a hell of a lot easier to build a network of electrical charging stations than a network of hydrogen stations.

I am sure if any investors in Nikola looked at the math, they would bail in a second. Their best bet is to drop the HFCs and go 100% BEV. They might get more backing then. But I think Milton won't let his ego take a hit and admit that HFC is not the way to go.

I think HFC might do well in aviation where cost isn't as much of an issue, and weight and energy density is far more important.

What I think would really help with the range and charging issues with BEV semis is to have a battery pack under the trailers. You could get a a full days range, and then charge the batteries overnight with a lower amperage to help battery longevity.
 

Jehorton

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I was talking with the Trevor a couple years back about coming to work for him. He wanted me to come down to the Phoenix area to interview. But after several email exchanges, I told him I was no longer interested in the position.

He was always trying to convince me he was right, even though I knew he was wrong. Why hire someone with 30 years of experience to teach you if you are going to ignore their expertise?

He ends up buying a $4.2M airplane when he could have had far more capability for much less money. But he wanted something he could fly himself, and he wanted brand new. All this time I am thinking "But your company hasn't even made a dime in profit?" That just doesn't seem responsible or trustworthy to me.
Pretty sure he comes from wealth.
 

thrill

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The two-tone leather interior of the new Bronco is rather stylish.

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jjwolf120

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The Tesla semi energy cost is expected to be around $0.24(2,000Wh x $0.12/kWh) per mile. The best case scenario for the Nikola I would estimate is around $1.25/mile. Well, a diesel truck at $3 per gallon and 6 MPG is only $0.50/mile.
I believe that Milton claims that he will be able to use excess energy from the grid for .04 per kwh (this is from memory), to generate the hydrogen. I take that with a very large grain of salt, but that is what he claims.
 

CappyJax

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I believe that Milton claims that he will be able to use excess energy from the grid for .04 per kwh (this is from memory), to generate the hydrogen. I take that with a very large grain of salt, but that is what he claims.
If that is possible, then Tesla charging stations could do the same and pass on the savings. In any case, I think the FCV is becoming less and less competitive as battery technologies increase. The planned advancements in FCV technology just hasn't come to fruition. I was a big supporter of FCV's, but I see BEV becoming much more suitable for most transportation needs over FCV. The charging of BEV's has made leaps and bounds.
 

Jehorton

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I don't think so, but I know he comes from a Mormon background.
Prior to working at Nikola Motor Company, Milton was the CEO and founder of dHybrid Systems LLC, a natural gas storage technology company which was acquired by America's largest steel providers, Worthington Industries, Inc. [4]

Prior to dHybrid Systems LLC, he was the CEO and founder of dHybrid, Inc., which recalibrated diesel engines to run off both natural gas and diesel to reduce emissions. [4]

Prior to dHybrid Inc., he was the CEO and founder of upillar.com an e-commerce site, and CEO and founder of SGS Alarms, an ADT authorized dealer
 

ajdelange

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I believe that Milton claims that he will be able to use excess energy from the grid for .04 per kwh (this is from memory), to generate the hydrogen. I take that with a very large grain of salt, but that is what he claims.
Yes, that's what he says. This arches my eyebrows too but who knows? One thing utilities hate is having to put leveling stations on line and take them off again. Perhaps some of them would be interested in a deal with a large buyer who could serve as a leveling sink for them.
 

Jehorton

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Nikola partnering with GM for their badger production
 

electruck

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“This strategic partnership with Nikola, an industry leading disrupter, continues the broader deployment of General Motors’ all-new Ultium battery and Hydrotec fuel cell systems,” GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra said. “We are growing our presence in multiple high-volume EV segments while building scale to lower battery and fuel cell costs and increase profitability.

Nikola is essentially abandoning the fuel cell technology and vehicle platform it has been developing...
https://www.foxbusiness.com/lifestyle/general-motors-to-build-nikola-badger-electric-pickup

Sounds pretty typical of GM and makes me very glad Rivian chose a different path.
 
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