A pair of Nikola Tre battery-powered Class 8 trucks caught fire last week in the United States in two different locations, with the latest incident being reported by the company at its Phoenix headquarters in Arizona on Friday, while another one was ablaze in Tempe, Arizona earlier last week, according to Reuters.
This brings the number of fires that involved Tre BEV trucks to four, after the one in June that reportedly affected multiple units at the startup’s headquarters in Phoenix and the so-called “thermal incident” that affected an engineering validation unit that was parked at the company’s plant in Coolidge, Arizona.
Nobody was injured during these last two fires, Nikola said, adding that the Friday fire appeared at a pre-production truck that was undergoing battery fire investigation and testing. In a statement sent to Electrek.com, the firm said the following:
“On Friday, September 8 at approximately 8:30 am, there was a thermal incident with one engineering validation battery-electric truck near Nikola’s Phoenix headquarters. No one was injured. This pre-production truck was outside and undergoing battery fire investigation and testing. We thank the Phoenix first responders for their quick action. We will share more information as we learn more.”
Last month, the zero-emissions truck startup that also manufactures a hydrogen-powered truck based on an Iveco chassis announced a recall for all the 209 Tre BEV rigs that reached dealers and customers after a third-party investigator that’s looking into the June fire released its preliminary findings, saying that a coolant leak inside a single battery pack was the probable cause of the fire.
Gallery: Nikola Tre BEV
Simultaneously with the recall, Nikola Motor temporarily suspended sales of its battery-powered truck until a resolution was reached but said that vehicles that are already on the road can still be used, with two recommendations for both customers and dealers.:
- Place the Main Battery Disconnect (MBD) switch into the “ON” position at all times to enable real-time vehicle monitoring and safety systems operation;
- Consider parking trucks outside to allow for over-the-air updates and better connectivity with Fleet Command, Nikola’s truck monitoring system.
After announcing the recall, Nikola Motor said that its software systems are being used to monitor trucks in the field in real-time, with a total of over 3,100 battery packs under the watchful eye of the company’s operators.
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Sources: Nikola, Reuters, Electrek
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