The US’ military has been pushing for more energy-efficient and oil-free ways to
kill people protect America’s oil-supply freedom for several years now, introducing “super-efficient” HUMVEEs, diesel-electric hybrids, and this: the US Army CERV.
First shown at last year’s Detroit Auto Show and again at the Indianapolis 500 as part of that event’s Memorial Day salute to the US military, the Clandestine Extended-range Vehicle (CERV) was on display at Chicago. Both of the CERV protoypes were on-hand, in fact, to show off the Army’s dedication to new technology and (of course) to help Army recruiters hook prospective engineering students into patriotic service.
The recruiters on-hand knew a bit about the CERV, and even let me try the McLaren F1-style central driver’s seat on for size (it fits!). I was shown an electric motor that was positioned inboard (as opposed to several modern EV concepts, which use hub-mounted motors) to improve the CERV’s survivability and ease of maintenance (the motor could be unbolted and swapped out with a new motor in minutes, if not seconds). The ghillie suit version (shown, at top) was also on-hand, showing off a “more forest, less desert” version of the CERV might look like if we ever invade Siberia (for example) as opposed to Iran.
You can check out more pictures of the CERV below, and (if you’re local) head over to the Chicago Auto Show and try one on. While you’re there, say thanks to the servicemen and veterans you see there (they don’t get to choose where they go or why, they’re just doing the best they can to do what they think is right).
Source: 2012 Chicago Auto Show.