Nikola (NKLA) founder Trevor Milton announced in a tweet Monday that the electric truck maker would give away a $60,000 Badger model in a drawing among those who put down a $5,000 reservation.
Reservations begin June 29.
Nikola went public with a bang earlier this month and now has a market cap of about $23 billion, even before selling a single vehicle. The company doesn’t expect revenue until next year.
Given the stiff competition from Tesla (TSLA) - Get Report - and potentially Ford (F) - Get Report and General Motors (GM) - Get Report - some experts have expressed doubts about whether Nikola will suddenly take over the electronic truck space.
Among the skeptics is TheStreet's Jim Cramer, who wrote on Twitter June 5, “I was concerned and am concerned about people trading on phantom, orders, but when I try to raise these issues I am just trashed and trashed so sometimes it isn't worth it to try to help.”
The June 29 date for Badger reservations was much earlier than anticipated. Milton told Barron’s consumer demand for the vehicle was far higher than the company forecast.
The Badger will be priced at $60,000 to $90,000. Tesla’s Cybertruck starts at about $40,000.
Electric and hybrid vehicles could constitute 6.8% of the North American heavy-duty truck market by 2030, according to Rhein Associates, an equipment research group.
“The biggest question mark that always comes up for me is infrastructure,” Rhein Associates analyst Andrew Wrobel told The Wall Street Journal.
Truck stops “are designed to push diesel and gasoline. They are not set up to handle electric charging, especially for long-haul truckers, and they are not set up for hydrogen, to power fuel cells,” Wrobel said.
Nikola shares recently traded at $63.06, down 1.47%.