Allison Transmission is working with Nikola Corporation to test Class 8 battery-electric and hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles at Allison’s advanced testing facility, the Vehicle Electrification + Environmental Test Center.
“We’re proud to collaborate with Nikola as they develop innovative, next-generation vehicles designed to reduce emissions and optimize performance,” said David Proctor, General Manager, Allison Vehicle Electrification + Environmental Test Center. “Our facility has the capabilities to support external customer test and validation programs for vehicles powered by every major propulsion type, which reinforces Allison’s commitment to taking a leadership role in the development of alternative fuel options for the commercial vehicle industry.”
The tests were conducted in controlled thermal environments and through dynamometer road simulations, which were capable of replicating a wide range of duty cycles. The vehicles were evaluated for their battery management and HVAC systems, and the tests also leveraged solar simulation to replicate extreme temperatures. The VE+ET Center provides several benefits for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) such as the ability to conduct testing in a safe, controlled, and consistent environment, which enables secure, dependable, and repeatable results.
The facility simulates real-world applications and climate conditions, allowing OEMs to reduce product development and validation timelines, bringing innovative technology and vehicle systems to market faster and more efficiently. Additionally, testing in a condensed timeframe that is not dependent on seasonal climate and road conditions results in reduced costs compared to on-road testing.
“Leveraging the capabilities of Allison’s VE+ET Center has been a key enabler for Nikola to accelerate our product development cycle and confidently bring to market our Tre BEV early last year,” said Nikola Head of Vehicle Validation, Adam Tarleton. “We are looking forward to continued collaboration with Allison on our Tre FCEV product to deliver an industry leading, best-in-class hydrogen FCEV with the performance, quality and reliability the commercial truck segment demands.”
The VE+ET Center, at 60,000 square feet, is the only facility of its kind in the Midwest. It allows for year-round testing in one centralized location, with dedicated test cells and suites for customers to facilitate new product development through collaboration.