If a motorcycle buzzes through a forest and knocks over a tree but no one is around to hear it, does it still make a sound?
The bike, that is.
Perhaps not, if it's the hybrid stealth-like version the Pentagon's research projects division plans to build.
BRD develops ultra-tough, high-performance electric vehicles, and will partner with Logos to fulfill the DARPA contract. The bike here, dubbed RedShift, is described as "barely legal" and the company says it builds electric bikes because they love "instant throttle response and flat, endless torque."
According to Defense Tech, U.S. military leaders approved funding to develop a hybrid, super-quiet motorcycle to be driven by special operations teams in environments where not causing a ruckus has an advantage.
"The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has issued a grant to integrate a multiple fuel, hybrid-electric power plant into a dirt bike built by BRD Motorcycles," Defense Tech reported.
The stealthy nature will come from the hybrid electric engine, built by Logos Technologies, which received a small business innovation research grant for the project. Much like hybrid cars that can drive past inattentive pedestrians while going almost totally unnoticed, the specially designed bike should offer operators an advantage while traveling through dangerous territory.
“Quieted, all-wheel-drive capability at extended range in a lightweight, rugged, single-track vehicle could support the successful operations of U.S. expeditionary and special forces in extreme terrain conditions and contested environments,” said Wade Pulliam, manager of advanced concepts at Logos. “With a growing need to operate small units far from logistical support, the military may increasingly rely on adaptable, efficient technologies like this hybrid-electric motorcycle.”
A student from the 720th Special Tactics Training Squadron drives around a sharp curve during a beginner level dirt bike course at Hurlburt Field, Fla. Special operators are the primary group that the bike is designed for, as they navigate contested environments (Image source: Department of Defense).
Logos said the project will is the first time a two-wheel-drive, multi-fuel hybrid capability has been integrated into a full-size off-road motorcycle.
(H/T: Defense Tech)
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