FACTORY OPENED – The world of industrial vehicles is in great turmoil: at a social level, due to the difficulty in finding drivers, at a technical level, due to the strong propulsion towards sustainable fuels, which translates into a particular focus on electric mobility in freight transport. Iveco it has always been a point of reference in the sector and, not surprisingly, the new S-Way is offered both with diesel engines and with liquid methane engines; in terms of power supply, the Turin-based company of the CNH Industrial group has entered into a partnership with the American Nikola for the production of an electric-powered truck, based on the platform of the new S-Way. Named Nikola Tre (in the pictures), this new industrial vehicle is produced in Ulm, in a specially built factory that was just inaugurated yesterday; the first units will then be delivered to selected customers located in the United States in 2022, while by the end of 2023 the production of a hydrogen-powered version of the Nikola Tre (FCEV) will begin, the prototype of which was unveiled yesterday.
> In the photo above the prototype of the Nikola Tre powered by hydrogen.
IN THE PROMISED TIMES – During the inauguration, Gerrit Marx, CEO of Iveco, declared: “In spite of the global pandemic crisis and the difficulties of the industrial world suffered in the last period, we are able to testify here the result of all the hard work carried out so far in compliance with the original plans; thanks to the proven experience and the firm footprint we are able to provide a Nikola a platform on which it can develop its own products. We are now focused on ensuring the success of the operation and jointly taking the lead in the long and short distance sustainable freight transport sector ”.
DIGITALIZED PROCESSES – The Ulm plant, where the Nikola Tre, spread over an area of 50,000 square meters, half of which are covered. Its construction and the first phase of the industrialization process of the new vehicle involved 160 suppliers and the planned initial annual production of the new electric vehicle is 1,000 units per year, with the aim of increasing it in the future. The plant operates according to the guidelines of the World Class Manufacturing and aims to zero waste, zero accidents and zero stock, with the entire production cycle traceable from the procurement of raw materials and semi-finished products and 100% digitalized, without the use of paper supports.
ELECTRICITY IN 2022, FUEL CELL IN 2023 – Designed as a safe, reliable and high-performance vehicle, a true zero-emission solution for freight transport, the Nikola Tre is based on the platform ofIveco S-Way with an axis co-designed and produced by FPT Industrial using Nikola’s high technological level at the level of electric vehicles and fuel cells, with the crucial components supplied by Bosch. The modular platform conceived by the three giants is destined to be equipped with electric propulsion and fuel cell technologies, the latter destined to follow in the role of range-extender technologies for increasing autonomy between refueling.