General Motors Is Joining Forces with Tesla Competitor Nikola

The newly formed alliance between electric vehicle company Nikola and auto industry giant General Motors may upset Tesla.
Irmak Bayrakdar

Longtime rivals Nikola and Tesla have been feuding over a number of topics: Nikola's hydrogen fuel cells, Tesla's Semi truck design lawsuit, stock shares, and their electric pickups, Cybertruck and Badger. 

A buzzing rivalry

The fact that they're both electric vehicle makers named after Nikola Tesla might also be another reason for the companies to keep dissing each other, but that's probably just us.

Nikola Motors has been promoting its hydrogen fuel cell technology that converts chemical potential energy, which is energy stored in molecular bonds, into electrical energy, saying that it will revolutionize the U.S. truck industry. Not everyone is on the same page though, with one notable example being Tesla CEO Elon Musk. 

Musk had something to say on the issue earlier in July.

Nikola has also sued Tesla over patent infringement for $2 billion, stating that their Semi truck looks a little too much like the Nikola One. The lawsuit that was filed two years ago is still continuing to this day.


While fans argue over whether Tesla's Cybertruck or Nikola's Badger is better, it's safe to say that this rivalry benefits electric vehicle aficionados the most with new designs being announced every day.

New designs on the way

With the announcement of General Motors' (GM) deal with Nikola, the hydrogen fuel cell-powered pickup truck is one step closer to hitting the market.

According to the deal, GM has bought 11% of Nikola's shares that are worth $2 billion, per Ars Technica. GM will provide for the production process of the Badger and maybe for other models in the future, including engineering and manufacturing. In the meantime, Nikola is ready to don the new designs with its hydrogen fuel cell technology. 

General Motors CEO Mary Barra stated that their strategic partnership with Nikola will help in the deployment of General Motors’ all-new Ultium battery and Hydrotec fuel cell systems. 

Working together by joining forces

In the same press release, Nikola founder Trevor Milton highlighted the fact that both companies are at the top of their games and are now working together for excellence.

He continued, "By joining together, we get access to their validated parts for all of our programs, General Motors’ Ultium battery technology and a multi-billion dollar fuel cell program ready for production. Nikola immediately gets decades of supplier and manufacturing knowledge, validated and tested production-ready EV propulsion, world-class engineering, and investor confidence." 

The deal seems to strengthen Nikola's hand against Tesla with the expert engineering and manufacturing of GM while helping the latter get a better grip over the fast-growing electric vehicle industry. 

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