As many car manufacturers shine on the annual SEMA show that is currently undergoing, Chevrolet decided to treat us with something special as well. On the Chevy stand we caught a look of the new military prototype Colorado which is, get this, Hydrogen powered.
When you look at it, you can see just another off-road-ready concept showing its face on the show, but the reality is something entirely different. Chevrolet made this Colorado concept for the United States Army and made it Hydrogen powered to test the effectiveness of fuel-cell vehicles in battlefield scenarios. The badge that this one carries is ZH2, and it looks awesome. What is even more impressive than the truck itself is the fact that it was created in less than a year. GM and the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development, and Engineering Center put their heads together and created this beast of a vehicle.
The chassis that carries this soon-to-be military vehicle is a stretched version of the standard Colorado platform, and it is rolled on the huge 37-inch tires that are able to clear over anything that the future battlefield has to offer. Charlie Freese, GM’s executive director of global fuel cell activities, gave a statement saying “Over the next year, we expect to learn from the Army the limits of what a fuel cell propulsion system can do when really put to the test”.
But what is exactly making this Colorado fit for the military? Well, the fact that FCEV powertrains are pretty quiet and do not make much noise makes this vehicle excellent for any of the future scouting scenarios where the stealth approach is imperative. Then there are electric motors built in it that are supposed to provide almost instant torque which means that this beast will be able to blast trough just about anything. To wrap all of that together, there is an Exportable Power Take-Off system which will provide soldiers mobile electric power supply when they take out the fuel cell from the vehicle.
Of course, the GM will have to do some internal testing with this ride before they hand it over to the military which plans a year-long testing that will definitely determine if the Colorado ZH2 has any military purpose and if it is able to cope with battlefield challenges. Whatever happens to it we have to admit that it looks more than excellent in its current form and based on received info, we do believe that there is a higher purpose for it.