In July, the US Army signed a contract with Canoo in which it agreed to evaluate the company’s Light Tactical Vehicle to determine if it could help support the Army’s mission. This week, Canoo announced that it has delivered the first LTV to the Army so it can poked, prodded, tested, and put through its paces in a real world combat environment.
The LTV is engineered for extreme environments and includes stealth configurations. It is designed to be durable with a focus on passenger and battery safety and incorporates Carbon Kevlar for strength without added weight. As with all Canoo vehicles, the LTV is designed for passenger ergonomics, taking body motion and height into consideration as well as multi-task components.
“The LTV is another milestone proving the power of our technology and how it can be used, even in tactical situations,” said Canoo CEO Tony Aquila. “This is a winning algorithm for our customers and company.”
The modular Light Tactical Vehicle can be converted from a pickup to a flatbed truck, a cargo vehicle, and more. With a convertible flatbed platform, the LTV can easily carry standard sized plywood, construction, and oversize materials as well as tactical equipment or attachments for the required mission.
Canoo’s proprietary modular attachment system and accessories quickly interchange the flatbed walls with many other types of mounts including racks, ramps, storage boxes, tents, or tactical systems. The modular upfitting enables the LTV to have mission-specific configurations at a lower total cost investment.
The LTV features a proprietary all wheel drive system with up to 600 hp. To support the increased demands of off-road environments, the LTV incorporates air springs, a raised suspension, and 32-inch all terrain tires that allow higher ground clearance for extreme or rugged conditions.
Canoo vehicles are based on the company’s proprietary multi-purpose platform which integrates all the critical components of an electric powertrain so it is as flat and efficient as possible while maximizing cabin and cargo space. The LTV for the Army is a modified version of the Canoo pickup truck that debuted in 2021.
Canoo’s line of battery-electric vehicles are purpose-built to help customers be more productive and achieve a higher return on capital while reducing total cost of professional ownership. Full specifications will be revealed closer to the start of production.
As I was reading the press release about the Canoo LTV, I couldn’t help but think of another multi-purpose vehicle designed for use by the US Army that went on to become one of the most enduring brands in automotive history — the World War II Jeep. The Jeep name is a contraction of “general purpose,” which perfectly describes that vehicle. Known in military lingo as a quarter ton truck, it was used for everything from transporting wounded soldiers to field hospitals to harassing Rommel’s troops in Africa.
It also occurred to me that the Canoo LTV looks a lot like the utes so popular in Australia and many other parts of the world. My final thought as I read the press release was that the Canoo platform could make an ideal vehicle for many of the tasks the US Postal Service performs on a daily basis. If it’s good enough for Walmart, maybe it’s good enough for USPS? The upshot is that Canoo has a chance of becoming another iconic vehicle brand much like the original Jeeps from 80 years ago.
I’m not saying that because I happen to own a few shares of the company (whose stock symbol is GOEV. How appropriate.) I am saying that because I think Canoo is making transformative vehicles. The styling may not be mainstream, but the Jeep was far from mainstream when it first appeared and look what happened. Who knows? Canoo may define what the new normal in automotive styling will be in the years to come.