After a long sabbatical, American automaker General Motors has brought back the Hummer brand by unveiling the all-new Hummer EV. Hummer used to be one of the most aspirational names in the world of cars, and almost everyone wanted to have one. The US military wanted a light armored vehicle for their troops back in the 1980s, so they turned to AM General for an answer. Not long after, they got the infamous Humvee – a vehicle that is still used on the frontlines worldwide. Arnold Schwarzenegger was still pretty young back then, and he really wanted himself a civilian version of the Humvee. In the early 1990s, AM General launched the original Hummer H1, thus starting a whole new breed of Hummer vehicles for regular civilians. Unfortunately, when the recession hit in 2008, it was the beginning of the end for Hummer. Or was it?
While Hummer did declare bankruptcy (actually GM did) in 2009, this was not the American marque’s final goodbye. Sometime in 2019, news broke that General Motors was seriously thinking about bringing back Hummer – this time around, Arnold wasn’t the one who asked for it. The world’s auto scene was exploding with new SUVs and crossovers, and now there were even all-electric SUVs. GM knew that to survive in this new world, simply bringing back Hummer and sticking huge, inefficient internal combustion engines won’t work. This is where the idea for an all-electric Hummer was born. Fast-forward to late 2020, and we have the GMC Hummer EV. In fact, the Hummer EV isn’t an SUV in the traditional sense as it is more of a convertible pickup truck (sort of).
“The all-new GMC Hummer EV will be the first of its breed – an open-air, all-electric super-truck with zero emissions and zero limits.”Al Oppenheiser, the Hummer EV project’s Chief Engineer
Clearly, there are big expectations from this super-truck than just revealing a concept that will never see stores. If you have ever seen a Hummer (in real life or movies), there will be no faffing about what this huge truck is. The Hummer EV is as Hummer as 2020 allows it to be. Up front, the bold ‘HUMMER’ branding sits right in the middle of the slender grille – each letter taking its own block – all of which are LED-backlit. There are also position lights located on the roof (front & back), just as with every Hummer before it.
The front design of the Hummer EV incorporates a muscular hood that features pronounced bulges to scare away lower vehicles and a two-tier bumper – it integrates a skid plate and two tow hooks. The wheel arches are so enormous, especially at the front, they could be used for stowaways if the need ever arises. The 35-inch Goodyear tires are huge too and designed to help the Hummer EV go where most EVs wouldn’t dare. The upright but small windshield and A-pillars are characteristic of the brand, while the power-operated footboards make climbing into the cabin easier. Meanwhile, the cavernous load bay at the back of the Hummer EV will come in handy if you want to transport some cargo. Though I believe this space would be best used to sit around with your friends while enjoying some pizza.
Compared to the beastly front of the Hummer EV, the rear fascia isn’t as threatening. Having said that, rear-ending it in your small hatchback or low-slung sports car isn’t recommended. It does feature large, all-LED tail lamps that also have the ‘Hummer EV’ logo etched on them, and the tailgate incorporates a step to make accessing the load bay a little easy. As for other storage options, the front trunk (frunk) is not HUGE, but you can still hide a small person in there. The GMC Hummer EV cabin is where you will find the biggest leap forward in technology, quality, and design is seen in any Hummer, ever. There are no gentle curves or subtle contours here. That isn’t the point of a Hummer. Rather, it is all about straight lines and sharp angles – everything looks very industrial yet in a contemporary way.
The combination of copper, metallic, matte, or glossy black accents cover almost the whole cockpit, and it is indeed quite impressive. However, let’s get to the juiciest aspect of the GMC Hummer EV. Its all-electric powertrain. Using a triple-motor layout powered by a beefy 200 kWh battery pack, the Hummer EV produces 1,000hp and a time-warping 15,991Nm of torque. Yes, you read that right. This electric vehicle has so much torque; it can literally move a small planet off its axis. To give you an idea of how much torque is, the Bugatti Chiron, a hypercar that can do over 400 kmph, makes ‘only’ 1,600Nm – a tenth of what the Hummer EV generates. That is… Wow! While sphincter-clenching acceleration isn’t the point of an SUV, this Hummer will get to 100 kmph in just a whisker over 3 seconds. Welcome back, HUMMER.