The Hummer is a unique vehicle on several levels; from its ominous size and unique military strengths and background, to the rise of the vehicle as a most unlikely street vehicle making slightly absurd headlines in tabloids across the world. Because of the latter, the Hummer feels rather like a period piece – an odd vehicle that reflects an odd moment in time emanating from when Arnold Schwarzenegger saw a Humvee while shooting the movie Kindergarten Cop in 1990. Impressed, he pushed AM General to release a civilian version of the vehicle which eventually went on sale in 1992 – the rest is a seemingly brief and curious history in civilian limelight.
The Hummer downfall was rapid. On the horizon was the enemy of gas-guzzling oversized vehicles – the move towards a greener, more conscientious attitude to road travel. Also, it’s size limited it to parts of the world where it wouldn’t potentially get stuck in narrow streets.
There didn’t seem to be any way back for Hummer as a civilian vehicle until the rise of the EV. Electric power removes the biggest criticism that the Hummer had of being a pollutant. Now GMC has revealed an electric version of the Hummer SUV with up to 819bhp to tempt new and lapsed customers.
Earlier this year, GMC announced the off-road Hummer EV Pickup with 1,000bhp, and the Hummer EV SUV will encompass a similar styling and make-up to that impressive off-roader.
The electric Hummer is designed for improved off-road manoeuvrability and while essentially sharing the same EV platform, the vehicle will in fact be shorter by 20 inches overall and also use the heavily protected battery pack as a load-bearing part of the overall chassis. This all goes to improve rigidity, which is essential in allowing the Hummer EV SUV to be an open top vehicle – with Infinity roof panels able to be removed – instead of having a standard roof.
It’s worth emphasising that Hummer see this vehicle as a bit of an all-rounder, but essentially want to maintain their credentials as producing impressive all-terrain vehicles. With that in mind, the shorter wheelbase allows the Hummer EV to have a 49 degree departure angle – an impressive increase of 27 per cent over the pickup sibling. The approach angle remains at just under 50 degrees. With the focus here on off-roading, the EV will have adaptable air suspension allowing an extra 6 inches of raise. In total, the vehicle has 13 inches of travel. Crabwalk uniquely allows the Hummer to steer all 4 wheels in the same direction to enable it to slowly creep over difficult obstacles.
The above is all standard, making the base model impressively kitted out, but if you want to impress the neighbours even more, then you should invest in the Extreme Off-Road Package; this gives further under chassis protection, lock differentials, 18-inch wheels, plus several cameras positioned around the Hummer to allow full visible control over any normally unseen obstacles.
For a big vehicle, despite a smaller footprint than the Hummer Pickup, the figures are impressive, with an acceleration from 0-62mph of just 3 and a half seconds, and a 300 mile battery range between charges. In an emergency, or when there are time constraints, the battery should be able to be charged to release 100 miles in just ten minutes. While the Hummer SUV EV offers an impressive 819bhp it also offers a massive 11,500lb ft of torque helping that acceleration.
Inside, tech and comforts are as to be expected these days. A 13.4 inch infotainment system features a touchscreen and incorporates an off-road trail map database – a nice touch. Additionally, a digital instrument display measures 12.3 inches. Folding the rear seats allows for a pretty decent 2,305 litres of space for general storage or luggage too.
The over-sized American EV seems to be becoming a bit of a thing with the likes of the Tesla Cybertruck and Land Rover-esque Bollinger B1 and B2 off-roaders. The Hummer SUV EV will join the fray in 2024, though it is probably unlikely that this trend will take off over here. With this in mind, the new electric Hummer SUV isn’t expected to officially be released for sale in the UK.
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