Off-road driving is a controversial past-time. The drivers who do it love the challenge of getting across seemingly impassable terrain hopefully without destroying their vehicles. Environmentalists, on the other hand, point out that the practice sullys remote pristine regions with air pollution, while at the same time tearing up that previously pristine terrain.
At this year's Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, Utah, Raser Technologies brought out its prototype plug-in hybrid Hummer H3 to demonstrate that it could at least eliminate the pollution issue without sacrificing the off-road capability. The Raser Hummer uses as similar powertrain architecture to the Chevrolet Volt. The motor provides drive torque with energy from a battery with a 40-mile nominal range. The engine drives a generator to sustain the battery after it's depleted. In Moab, the Raser Hummer crawled over the rocks silently and emissions free. Of course, a clean tailpipe does nothing to address the problem of trampling the trails, but it's a start. Check out the video after the jump.