We’ve covered Atlis Motors a number of times over the years here at CleanTechnica. What it has been known the most for in the past is its truck platform development, and one of the things that caught my eye about Atlis was that you could build a very normal and versatile truck, and without the inflexibilities that come with the upcoming (eventually…) Cybertruck’s exoskeleton design.
Founded in 2018, the company has been focused on developing electric vehicle technology for heavy and light duty work trucks used in agriculture, service, utility, and construction industries, and that’s what it has been known for. But, along the way, Atlis has gotten a lot deeper into battery technology than many EV companies, and this apparently has transformed the company.
According to the company’s website, it figured out along the way that successfully electrifying the truck industry was a much bigger and wider challenge than it appeared to be at first. Electric trucks needed better battery technology to keep up with diesel trucks (or even beat them), along with on-site charging, energy storage, and many other things. So, Atlis decided to shift its main focus away from trucks for now, and will go back to vehicles and other mobility solutions once a whole ecosystem is ready to support them.
Atlis Motor Vehicles recently announced that it will be shipping its first battery packs to an off-highway equipment customer in summer of 2023. To further align with the company’s focus on developing technology for mobility and infrastructure, it has also rebranded as Nxu, Inc (pronounced: “new”).
“At Nxu, we are driving an energy revolution by building energy solutions that enable a faster transition to an electric future,” says Nxu CEO and Founder Mark Hanchett. “Imagine not having to stop for hours to recharge during your family RV road trip or worrying about how to transition your business’s fleet from diesel to electric. The path towards this future begins with a hard reboot to existing battery and charging solutions and Nxu will pave the way through development of electric battery cells, battery packs, energy storage solutions and the world’s first megawatt (MW) charging stations, starting with the delivery of the Qube battery pack.”
Nxu’s Qube battery packs are set to revolutionize the industry, addressing many of the current challenges related to electric vehicles. With proprietary cells, its batteries allow for faster charging times, greater range, and extended lifespan compared to legacy electric batteries.
The Company’s energy solutions can also be used to power a wide array of mobility products, residential and commercial energy storage systems, and charging infrastructure. It is dedicated to providing customers with innovative solutions that make electrification more accessible and efficient.
“Nxu’s vertically integrated approach is designed to generate value for our shareholders and our customers across all levels of the value chain,” said Nxu President, Annie Pratt. “The company is committed to a milestone-driven strategy that prioritizes delivering the first battery packs and generating revenue this Summer.”
Nxu, Inc has officially launched its new website: www.nxu.inc. The corporate reorganization to a holding company structure is set to complete on May 11, 2023 following a shareholder vote on May 9, 2023. If you’ve invested in the company, Nxu told the press that outstanding stock certificates will not be affected by the name change and will not need to be exchanged. All stock trading, filings, and market-related information will continue to be reported under the new corporate name and ticker symbol.
On April 22, 2023, Nxu is inviting the public to join it in celebrating Earth Day as it opens its manufacturing facility and unveils its Qube charging station at 1828 N Higley Rd, Ste 116, Mesa, AZ 85205. From 10 a.m – 6:00 p.m (MST), visitors will get a firsthand look at the cutting-edge technology being used to build the Qube and the rest of the ecosystem from the ground up and be among the first to charge their EVs on a Nxu charger.
It’s important to note that Atlis isn’t dead. As a future truck and truck components brand, Atlis will live on as a subsidiary of Nxu, so if you’ve been excited by the trucks, be confident that even the lawyers and bean counters are on board with that still happening!
This Approach May Pay Off In The Long Run
It’s one thing to show off a prototype and sell a few dozen trucks to companies willing to test new technology. It’s another thing entirely to build out a network of chargers. Powering the megawatt and up levels of power needed to support those chargers is yet another thing. This puts the whole industry in not just a “chicken and egg” situation, but chickens and eggs stacked inside each other like Russian nesting dolls.
In other words, I think the company is right to see that medium and heavy electric trucks are going to need a very different approach compared to personal vehicles, light trucks, and such. While a company could pretty easily field an electric car or a half-ton truck, anything bigger brings with it more and more challenges.
By focusing on the fundamentals of power and battery technology, Nxu has a chance to not only make Atlis more successful in the future, but can set itself up to support the infrastructure and mass produced battery technology other electric truck brands will rely upon in the future.
But, this approach does come with some risk. While Atlis isn’t a well-known truck brand like Rivian or Tesla (eventually), it still has a name in the industry. Switching to something a little avant-garde like “Nxu” can leave people a little confused about what the company is doing and what its goals are.
But, the fact that Nxu is keeping Atlis as a subsidiary helps us know that there’s still a roadmap toward the road. For now, it needs to focus on the fundamentals, but when Atlis is ready to hit that road, it’ll be in a much more solid position to achieve success with a complete ecosystem, and not just a truck.
Featured image by Nxu, Inc.
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