We now have possession of the first two Stealth Nighthawk Hybrids west of the Rockies. In a word, they are awesome.
For those new to hybrids, the Nighthawk hybrid is powered entirely by the high-torque 30 horse power electric motor. The electricity comes from a 72 volt battery system. All this is just like the standard All-Electric Stealth Nighthawk. What is added with the hybrid is a gasoline powered generator which allows on-the-go charging of the battery system.
The effect is that instead of an electric UTV with a range of 30 miles, you now have an electric UTV with range limited only by the amount of fuel you carry. The standard fuel tank in the hybrid system is about 1.5 gallons and will give a range approaching 80 miles. But, if you merely carry more fuel, that range can be extended indefinitely.
And, the auxiliary power unit (APU) has some other great benefits as well. With the power panel on the vehicle, you have two 110 volt outlets to run everything from power tools to coolers or heaters. Think how useful this will be for contractors, ranchers, and farmers. There is also a 12 volt outlet that allows you to keep your phone or computer charged. Here is a picture of the APU panel.
Today we will be doing a full test to determine just how much range is added by the APU with the standard fuel capacity. We want to know how well the system works, how noisy it is and most of all if it really means you will have range limited only by your supply of fuel. So far, we are very impressed with the noise level (or lack of noise level). You can’t hear the APU over road and wind noise. We will report our results by next week.