Nikola Corporation has signed agreements with the Bosch Group for Class 7 and 8 fuel-cell electric vehicles (FCEV) which will enable Nikola to build the Bosch fuel-cell power modules at its Coolidge, Arizona factory.

The agreements will allow adaptation of fuel cell power modules for the Nikola Tre and US Nikola Two fuel cell applications.

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Under the agreements, Bosch will supply both fully assembled fuel cell power modules as well as major components to Nikola, including the fuel cell stack, for Nikola to assemble. The parties will work together for sourcing of remaining components for the assemblies.

Nikola and Bosch have defined together a scalable and modular approach for the truck applications based upon use of multiple fuel-cell power modules using the Bosch heavy duty commercial vehicle fuel cell stack.

The fuel cell power modules are expected to launch in 2023 with the first application being the Class 8 regional haul Tre FCEV. Nikola anticipates the overall vehicle design will result in a range of up to approximately 500 miles. Nikola plans to further expand capacity for use in the Class 8 long haul Two FCEV with an anticipated range of up to approximately 900 miles.

The vehicles are planned to use common fuel cell power modules in 200kW and 300kW configurations.

The fuel cell power modules and components are being designed and validated for the demands of commercial vehicle power. The Tre FCEV will also be launched in the EU, using the same fuel-cell power modules supporting vehicle manufacturing planned at Nikola’s joint venture with Iveco in Ulm, Germany.

“This announcement is the result of a multi-year working relationship with Bosch,” said Nikola CEO Mark Russell.

Nikola plans to expand Coolidge by 50,000 sq ft and up to 50 additional manufacturing jobs to accommodate initial fuel cell power module assembly by 2023 with subsequent expansions planned.

It is also expanding engineering and testing facilities to support the fuel cell and vehicle validation and testing at its Phoenix headquarters.

Nikola is currently building and testing Tre FCEV alpha vehicles using the fuel cell power modules from the agreements and plans to begin road testing by the end of 2021 in support of customer pilot tests.