H1ghlander was a surprising 3rd, because its strategy was to cruise for an easy win. H1ghlander planned to easily finish a half hour ahead of the field, but that was not to be. It started from the pole position and intended to steadily stretch the gap. Five hours in, H1ghlander was leading, but it was clear that it was off its pace or wounded. H1ghlander lost its legs, and limped in the climb, but blazed in the descent. Its navigation was hot-on, but it didn't have the steam.

In training, H1ghlander had never missed a deadline by more than 2 minutes, but it missed by more than 30 minutes when it counted. The team has not yet ascertained root cause. Its plan and schedule were perfect, and it drove beautifully. More is known about what was right, than is known about what was missing. Its finish-line sprint was triumphant. Amazingly, the wounded warrior went the distance.

H1ghlander is the Red Team's new contender for the 2005 Grand Challenge. H1ghlander is a 1999 H1 HUMMER donated by AM General. It incorporates an electronic CANbus, a 6.5-liter factory turbo-charged diesel engine, traction control and locking differentials.

H1ghlander's drive-by-wire technology is embedded in, more than being added on. A Caterpillar electronic control module throttles the engine. An HD Systems actuator brakes H1ghlander. TTTech controllers regulate the brakes, shift the transmission, and shift the transfer case. A Caterpillar computer regulates tire inflation, velocity, steering, the E-stop, and communication with navigation computers. Caterpillar's MorElectric system generates and distributes power to computers, sensors and actuators. Applanix estimates H1ghlander's location and heading by combining inertial, GPS and odometry data.

H1ghlander maps terrain with 7 laser range scanners . One is a Riegl scanner, which is pointed and stabilized by a 3-axis gimbal. Stereo cameras also ride aboard the gimbal. The gimbal is a collaborative development with HD Systems, Philips, and KVH. A lightweight carbon fiber dome protects the gimbal and sensors.

Seven Intel Pentium-M's process terrain models, plan routes, avoid hazards and direct H1ghlander's driving.