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Jay Leno Drives A Military-Use GM Defense Infantry Squad Vehicle

GM is attempting to grow its military business with items like this Infantry Squad Vehicle (or IV), which was featured on a recent episode of Jay Leno’s Garage.

The United States Army contracted General Motors for $214.3 million to produce and maintain 649 ISVs in 2020. GM said the army had permission to purchase an additional 1,416 units if the initial batch proved successful.

The ISV is based on the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 mid-size pickup truck’s platform. It also makes use of the vehicle’s Multimatic spool-valve dampers, which are meant for civilian usage.. In fact, GM claims that the ISV utilizes 90% commercial off-the-shelf components.

The Colorado ZR2 is powered by the same 2.8-liter turbodiesel engine used in the Colorado ZR2, but it has been modified to run on jet fuel and generate 375 horsepower per US Army specs. GM is also testing a fuel-cell version without military involvement, GM Defense president Steve duMont informed Jay.

The ISV had some unique design criteria when compared to other trucks. The ISV needed to be light enough (curb weight is around 5,000 pounds) to be sling-loaded beneath a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter and compact enough to fit inside a CH-47 Chinook for the military’s needs. It can also be air dropped from a C-130 transport plane.

The ISV is a troop-carrying vehicle with an illustrious history, deriving its name from the fact that it can transport a complete nine-person infantry squad into battle. It has two standard seating rows as well as rear and side-facing seats all the way in the back, according to DuMont. Its cabin is surrounded by a roll cage taken straight from motorsport use, and on the roof, soldiers may store their equipment in mesh nets.

Jay drives the personnel carrier around on a secret off-road location, in addition to learning all about it while giving several suggestions for civilian usage. DuMont also claims that the military version can also be marketed to America’s allies. To learn more about the vehicle and see Jay put it through its paces, watch the video above!

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