The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) of China have reportedly selected their next official off-road SUV; the Yongshi Warrior. These have actually been around for years, but have just been green-lit for official military duty.
Chinamil says six variations of the vehicle were vetted, and have been running all over China for over three-quarter-million miles of testing since 2007.
Details on what, if any, special treatment the military-spec version get seems scarce. But we do know that the Yongshi Warrior was built by supersized Chinese car-making conglomerate Beijing Automotive Industry Holding Co., Ltd. (BAIC). Specifically, a division called Beijing Automobile Works Co., Ltd. (BAW) that specializes in off-road vehicles and light trucks.
The Yongshi Warrior is said to have an all-metal fully enclosed body, with joints sealed-in “for more reliability” and ostensibly protection. Apparently a “soundproof cotton” mitigates engine noise inside the cabin.
An indvidual named Li Qinnan, identified as a “researcher of the vehicle,” is quoted saying; “The SUV uses supercharging electrically controlled common rail diesel engine system suitable for plateau environment. The engine system can effectively enhance the power and acceleration performance of the vehicle, even in snow-covered plateau areas.”
You don’t hear about supercharged diesel engines very often, but they do exist. So the Warrior either has one, or the translation of Qinnan’s statement got wonky. I’m not 100 percent sure and haven’t heard back from BAW yet. Do you see a supercharger in this engine picture? Me neither, but this might not be the final-version powerplant.
The spec sheet I found for the civilian version seems to show two engine options, but that’s about all I could figure out. (Any Mandarin readers here?)
If “42/33,” three rows down in the second section, is referring to approach and departure angles the Yongshi should be a bit of a beast off-road. That’s Jeep Wrangler territory.
Interior pictures of a prototype make the rig look pretty spartan, and chintzy, but there’s definitely a regular-old three-pedal manual and a lever-activated transfer case in there.
I’d love to hear what American soldiers who have sat in our HMMWV’s think this compares, because from here it looks like Power Wheels car with a CD player. Again, the finalized version might have changed.
How many and how quickly the PLA plans to start buying these up remains a mystery, but China Today says there were 2.11 million people serving in the Chinese military last year with another 3.25 million “reserve” troops. If that’s even close to accurate, there are a whole lotta butts to put in some soundproof cotton Yongshi seats.
Images via BAIC, drnan tu/Flickr
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