Prospeed 6×6 Hiload Fire Engine Revealed

Prospeed 6×6 Hiload Fire Engine Revealed

Prospeed, a British company based in York, specializes in the conversion and customization of off-road vehicles. One of their recent projects involves converting a Toyota Hilux pick-up truck into a three-axle vehicle. Unlike other 6×6 conversions aimed at displaying wealth, Prospeed’s conversion serves a practical purpose: the ability to carry more weight using three axles instead of two.

Toyota Hilux Prospeed Hiload 6x6 fire truck Photo Gallery

The conversion of the Toyota Hilux into a 6×6 configuration aims to significantly increase its payload capacity while maintaining its compact size compared to a traditional truck, except for its length. Prospeed has showcased a specific application resulting from this conversion: a specialized fire engine suitable for extinguishing fires in electric vehicles.

This unique fire engine, known as the “Hiload 6×6,” not only serves the usual firefighting purposes but also excels in tackling battery fires in electric cars. Its low height of 1.85 meters allows it to access underground car parks where most fire engines are unable to go.

6x6 Hilux Toyota Landcruiser and Pick-up LTATV | 6x6 Hi Load

During the conversion process, Prospeed extends the vehicle frame by 1.2 meters behind the cabin and installs suspensions for the second rear rigid axle. Both rear axles are equipped with height-adjustable air suspension, replacing the original rear leaf springs of the Toyota Hilux. This modification increases the vehicle’s length to 6.3 meters and extends the wheelbase between the front and rear axles to 4.3 meters. The curb weight of the converted vehicle amounts to 2.6 tons.

To enable the operation of all three axles, Prospeed employs an additional transfer case, which is attached to the original transfer case. The secondary transfer case features two cardan shaft outputs for the two rear axles and includes a differential lock to prevent power transfer to the rear axles when necessary.

Under normal operation, the front axle and the rearmost axle are driven, while the middle axle can be engaged for 6×6 drive at the touch of a button in the vehicle’s cockpit. Switchable differential locks are also installed in the two rear axles to enhance traction.

Aside from the significant increase in length, the payload capacity of the Hiload 6×6 triples compared to the original Hilux. With a payload of three tons, the Hiload can effectively carry the heavy firefighting equipment required. This capacity allows for the inclusion of a fire-fighting water tank with a capacity of 1,200 liters, enabling independent firefighting operations without relying on local water supplies.

To adapt the Hiload 6×6 for firefighting in electric vehicles, Prospeed collaborates with Atenta, a Czech company. Atenta installs the “Coldcut Cobra” system developed by the Swedish manufacturer Cold Cut Systems. Originally designed to minimize risks for firefighters by allowing firefighting from outside burning rooms, the Coldcut Cobra system enables the cutting of an outer shell using high-pressure water and delivers the extinguishing water directly to the fire.

As the prevalence of electric vehicles increases, fire departments will encounter burning electric cars more frequently. The Coldcut Cobra system proves effective in firefighting involving battery packs in electric vehicles, allowing for the direct application of extinguishing water to reach the fire’s core by penetrating the outer shell of the battery pack.

Compared to conventional firefighting methods, this system saves a substantial amount of water, utilizing up to 60 liters per minute. With the Hiload 6×6’s carried water capacity, firefighting operations can be sustained for at least 20 minutes.