Tesla rival Nikola names Michael Lohscheller as new CEO


Nikola said on Wednesday that Michael Lohscheller will take over as the electric-truck maker’s chief executive officer when Mark Russell retires on Jan. 1 next year.

Lohscheller, who joined the company in February, will take over as president from Russell and join Nikola’s board effective immediately, the company said.

Lohscheller, 53, was instrumental in Tre battery electric vehicles’ production and in achieving development milestones for the Tre fuel-cell electric vehicles, the company said.

Nikola, which aims to challenge Tesla and manufacture between 300 and 500 Tre battery electric trucks this year, stuck to its production target last week after its second-quarter revenue beat estimates. 

Lohscheller was the CEO of German automaker Adam Opel from conglomerate Stellantis’ stable and briefly served as Vietnamese car maker VinFast’s global top boss before taking on the role of Nikola Motor’s president.

Michael Lohscheller
Michael Lohscheller joined the company in February as president of Nikola Motor.
Bloomberg via Getty Images
Mark Russell
Mark Russell replaced Nikola founder Trevor Milton as CEO in 2020.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Lohscheller has improved communication and accelerated decision-making at Nikola Motor, Chairman Stephen Girsky said in a statement.

Russell, 59, replaced Nikola founder Trevor Milton, accused of defrauding investors by lying about the company, as CEO in 2020. 

Shares in Nikola rose 0.5% in midday trading.