General Motors’ Chevrolet brand and the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) have joined forces to develop a fuel cell electric vehicle starting from the Colorado pickup.
This is part of the signed agreement between the two parties from last year which has to do with automotive technology implemented for military purposes. The army is interested in trialing fuel cell electric propulsion and power generation systems – they wish to begin prototype checks in 2017 – when tests and demonstrations will show if the hardware has inherent benefits. GM points out electric vehicles might be great for the military thanks to the huge torque provided by the electric motors from the start as well as the quietness of the powertrain, which makes them ideal for military vehicles not wanting to attract attention.
Generation lots of torque from the get go is adamant for an off-road military vehicle and using fuel cells brings another advantage – the byproduct is water and that could be useful in remote areas. As for the Colorado, a teaser image shows a complete body workout and sleek LED headlights. It would also be interesting to see if the fuel cell Colorado becomes successful in the military area if it can then be translated into civilian life, with the company already announcing plans for a commercial fuel cell system by the end of the decade.