General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) will become an 11% owner of electric truck startup Nikola Motors Corp. (NASDAQ: NKLA) and build the battery-electric Badger pickup as well as providing the fuel cells for Nikola’s Class 7 and 8 full-size trucks, the companies said Tuesday.
GM, which plans its own electric pickup truck, also recently invested in startup Lordstown Motors, which is planning a commercially focused pickup.
As CEO of VectoIQ, former GM Vice Chairman Steve Girsky led the reverse merger that brought Nikola public in June.
GM will engineer, validate, homologate and build the Nikola Badger pickup in both battery and fuel cell electric variants. It is part of $2 billion worth of in-kind services the automaker will provide. GM also will provide its Hydrotec fuel cells for use in Nikola’s Class 7 and 8 tractors. Production begins in 2023.
Nikola expects to save more than $4 billion in battery and powertrain costs over 10 years and more than $1 billion in engineering and validation costs.