Nikola Motor Company’s New Manufacturing Facility: Buckeye, Arizona
Electric Truck Innovators Enter Greater Phoenix
Nikola Motor Company announced that it has selected Buckeye, Arizona, as the future location of its corporate headquarters and hydrogen-electric semi-truck manufacturing facility. Nikola, currently located in Salt Lake City, Utah, designs and manufactures electric vehicles and related drivetrains, components, and storage systems. You have probably heard of the ultra-sleek, approximately 1,000hp, 2,000-lb-ft of torque Nikola One sleeper cab and Nikola Two day cab hydrogen-electric semi-trucks, which can be reserved for a 100 percent refundable $1,500 deposit; Nikola suggests 8,000 trucks are on pre-order. Nikola truck deliveries are projected to begin in 2020, of course subject to testing and regulation compliance.
Selecting a location was no small feat. In fact, it took a year to select Buckeye—the seventh fastest growing city in the country, according to Buckeye mayor Jackie Meck—from the 30 potential site locations spanning nine states. Not only is it a big deal for Nikola, but it’s also a big deal for Buckeye and the Greater Phoenix region. Several favorable factors influenced the partnership between involved parties and the ultimate decision: educated, skilled workforce; Governor Doug Ducey’s entrepreneur background; pro-business environment; proximity of engineering schools; and geographic access to major markets. The move is projected to bring $1 billion in capital investment to the area by 2024.
The one-million-square-foot manufacturing plant in Buckeye will be built on a 500-acre parcel of land along the Sun Valley Parkway and future Wintersburg Parkway. The location is at one of the entrances to the Douglas Ranch/Trillium community, which is El Dorado Holdings and JDM Partners’ master-planned prototype “Smart City” community estimated to attract more than 300,000 residents. Nikola’s R&D and headquarters will be transferred immediately, with the transition completed by October 2018; construction of the manufacturing facility is slated to be underway by the end of 2019. The change will bring about an estimated 2,000 jobs, which is always a good side effect of doing business in America.