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Nikola’s losses deepen following costly recall of its battery-electric semi-trucks

Nikola TRE FCEV 2.

Courtesy of: Nikola

Electric truck manufacturer Nicholas said Thursday it has received nearly 300 orders for its new hydrogen fuel cell semi-truck – but it faces what will be a costly recall of its previous battery-electric trucks.

Nicholas recalled all of its Tre battery-electric trucks, 209 in total, in August following a fire caused by a coolant leak in a truck’s battery. It announced Thursday that after an investigation into the causes, it had decided to replace the batteries of the 209 trucks at an estimated cost of $61.8 million.

The company plans to resume delivering battery-electric trucks to its customers in the first quarter of next year. Despite the recall, one dealership ordered 47 battery-electric trucks during the third quarter, Nikola said.

Nikola said it currently has 277 “no-obligation” orders for its new fuel cell truck from 35 different fleet customers. It shipped a total of three trucks during the third quarter, compared to 63 in the corresponding quarter a year earlier.

Here are the key figures from Nikola’s third quarter results report.

  • Adjusted loss per share: 30 cents versus 14 cents expected by Wall Street analysts surveyed by LSEG, formerly known as Refinitiv
  • Income: Down $1.7 million from Wall Street estimate of $13.3 million, according to LSEG

Nikola’s net loss was $425.8 million, or 50 cents per share. On an adjusted basis, excluding stock-based compensation, it lost 30 cents per share. A one year agoNikola lost $236.2 million, or 54 cents per share.

Nikola reported negative revenue of $1.7 million in the third quarter, after paying about $2.4 million to repurchase seven trucks from former dealers as new CEO Steve Girsky refocused the company’s sales efforts in California. Its revenue was $24.2 million in the third quarter of 2022.

Nikola raised $250 million in the third quarter. As of September 30, it had $362.9 million in cash, up from $226.7 million as of June 30 and just $121.1 million. as of March 31.

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