In the Army Now: Airless Tires Hit the Battlefield (w/ video)

Polaris ATV with Airless Tires

America’s modern military is fast, nimble, and – most of all! – mobile. A big part of that mobility comes courtesy of go-anywhere vehicles like the Hummer and the upcoming ULV diesel-electric hybrid, but a flat tire can quickly bring forward progress to a halt. To keep the US military mobile, Polaris has fitted non-pneumatic, airless tires to its MV850 ATV – standard issue to a number of soldiers in the US Special Forces.

The airless tires seen here on the Polaris MV850 can reportedly take a bullet without failing, with at least one prototype covering more than 1000 off-road miles after being punctured by a railroad spike. With a full combat load, including rider and gear, the tires are expected to have a 5000-mile, low-maintenance service life.

For military use (in desert camo, in other words), these airless tires look like this …


… and, according to a report on Fox “News” last week, a Polaris representative insists that the airless tires will be available on the civilian model of the Polaris MV850 in about six months’ time, with additional Polaris models (including side-by-side ATVs) following some time later.

You can see a Polaris MV850 fitted with the flat-proof “TerrainArmor” airless tires in action in the Fox Car Report video, below. Enjoy!


Source | Photos: Fox News, via Motorpasion.

Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, out on two wheels, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.