Among the bolder accusations made by Hindenburg Research in their recent scathing report about Nikola Corporation was the allegation that Nikola faked its Nikola One semi truck "in motion" video, which appeared to show a functioning big rig barreling through the desert, trailer in tow.
Hindenburg alleged, based on a former employee who spoke with Nikola's Chief Engineer Kevin Lynk that "the video was simply the result of Nikola towing the truck to the top of a hill and rolling it down."
In other words, the video wasn't of a working semi, but rather just a truck rolling down a hill.
"The deception involved in the production of this video appears to have been elaborate," the report claims. "The company scouted a remote section of road on the Mormon Trail just to the south of Grantsville, Utah, which we have since located. This section of road is lightly used and features a 2-mile-long perfectly straight stretch with a consistent 3 percent grade–plenty of length and enough of a slope to get a motorless truck rolling."
Hindenburg even claimed in their report that they "rolled a vehicle in neutral down the same hill" and "reached a top speed of 56 mph and rolled for ~2.1 miles".
This has prompted some social media sleuths to do their own investigating; heading out to the precise area mentioned in the Hindenburg report and filming their vehicles, in neutral, heading down the same stretch of road. The hashtag #NikolaChallenge is being used to document the results.
#NikolaChallenge Completed.— Nick (@Nick_P3D) September 13, 2020
Started just after the cattle guard. Speed at N. Willow cross road was 42mph. Top speed 48mph.
Will return w/ Model 3 soon. Went off-roading afterward this round.
Who's next? @WholeMarsBlog? :)
Will reply to this w/ unedited vid. @InsiderNikola pic.twitter.com/7zyZRHY6Dv