The Military's Next Hummer
When it debuted, the original Hummer was a great vehicle for driving over intense terrain in some of the world's most war-torn environments. In many respects it still is, but since it's become equally adept at terrorizing suburban mall parking lots on Saturday afternoons, the armed forces are nearly ready to trade it in for something new. Something exactly like what you're seeing here.
Meet the Light Combat Tactical All-Terrain Vehicle, or L-ATV, from Oshkosh Defense. It's likely the Pentagon's choice for the next Hummer, and it's a seriously badass truck that's as revolutionary as it is awesome.
First, the obvious stuff. It's pretty effing safe, and not just in a basic, machine-guns-won't-get-you sort of way. MRAP (Mine Resistant, Ambush Protected) levels of security mean the L-ATV is about as safe as any vehicle on Earth shy of an actual tank.
Twenty inches of wheel-travel means it can go to some pretty remote and otherwise impassible locations if it must. Additionally, the ride height can be adjusted higher or lower, depending on a given mission's needs. Adjustable suspension in and of itself isn't revolutionary, but the concept of an army truck with a suspension not too dissimilar from a hardcore off-roading Jeep is pretty wild.
Oh yeah, and it's a freaking hybrid. There's actually no traditional drivetrain at all. Yeah, it has a diesel engine, but it's just a glorified generator that sends juice to a set of electric motors, located at each wheel.
In theory, the instant torque and virtually infinitely adjustable power distribution means it'll be much easier to drive in the types of conditions that would normally halt anything not using treads.
The design's done, and very shortly the Pentagon will decide whether or not to order a bunch of 'em, at a cost of around $550,000 each.
No word on whether Schwarzenegger will be able to get his hands on one.