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Tue. 11:03 a.m.: Battery cells for GM, Nikola EV to be made in Lordstown

DETROIT – General Motors announced its second major electric vehicle partnership in less than a week today, this time a $2 billion deal with startup Nikola.

GM will take an 11 percent ownership stake in the Phoenix company and will engineer and build Nikola’s Badger hydrogen fuel cell and electric pickup truck. The Badger is expected to be in production by the end of 2022.

Battery cells for the pickup will be produced at the plant GM is building in partnership with South Korea’s LG Chem in Lordstown.

GM also will help with cost reductions for Nikola’s other vehicles including heavy trucks, and the company will use GM’s battery system and hydrogen fuel technology.

In exchange for the 10-year deal, GM will get a $2 billion worth of Nikola’s newly-issued common stock that will come three increments through 2025.

The move sets up GM for a new revenue stream and possibly a change in its business model, essentially becoming a parts supplier to other companies for electric vehicle frames, batteries, controls and components.

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