Boeing's Phantom Badger is the Halo jeep you've been looking for

Credit: Boeing

At first glance, Boeing's newest jeep may look like a Power Wheels version of a Humvee. Don't let that impression fool you, however, because this little powerhouse is every bit the warrior its big brother is. Designed to give small teams of ground troops speed and firepower on command, this is the Phantom Badger.

With a 240-horsepower engine and a top speed of at least 80 miles per hour, the Phantom Badger is small enough to be air-lifted to troops aboard aircraft like the V-22 Osprey. The Phantom Badger can be deployed from the Osprey's belly in as little as 17 seconds, or if time is a bit more pressing, air-dropped onto the battlefield. As for offensive power, the Phantom Badger can be outfitted with either a .50-caliber machine gun or a 40mm automatic grenade launcher, as well as a pair of rear-facing machine guns in the back seats.

Those same rear seats can be outfitted as medevac stretchers or cargo shelves, depending on what the soldiers in the field need. The payload and versatility of the Phantom Badger are especially impressive when you take into account that the vehicle itself is only 60 inches wide. It's that profile that makes the Phantom Badger small enough for an Osprey to carry it. It also means that a C-17 transport plane can carry, and air-drop 10 of them. After 5,000 miles of testing, including an air-drop or two, Boeing has decreed the Phantom Badger ready for active duty. Now if we can only outfit the guys driving it in some Master Chief armor, too.

Boeing (PDF), via Wired

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