GMC’s second Hummer line is set to debut on April 3, the automaker confirmed, though actual production of the new SUV model could fall as much as a year behind that of the original Hummer pickup.
The all-electric GMC Hummer SUV will take its formal bow in a TV spot scheduled for 5 p.m. EST during the typically high-rated NCAA Final Four men’s basketball tournament, GM said in a statement. The automaker plans to begin taking advance reservations at the same time.
The announcement of the public launch was accompanied by pics and a video showing the all-electric SUV undergoing “Winter testing in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, where the GMC Hummer EV team put this supertruck through its paces in sub-zero temperatures on various slippery surfaces, including snow, ice, steep and split-mu grades. Key tests include integrating its powerful all-wheel drive torque distribution with the traction control system, as well as calibrating and testing the electronic stability control system.”
No longer the brand environmentalists hate
The Hummer name was originally applied to a civilian version of the military’s Hgh Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle, colloquially known as the HUMVEE. General Motors acquired rights to the original concept, adding a number of variants and marketing it through a unique sales channels. It abandoned the Hummer brand after emerging from bankruptcy in 2010 – but retained rights for the name.
Now, what had been a brand that environmentalists loved to hate is coming back as an eco-friendly alternative to traditional, gas guzzlers like the Chevrolet Silverado pickup and Tahoe SUV. Going forward, however, the Hummer name will be used for specific product lines sold through GMC, rather than relaunched as a standalone brand.
The GMC division unveiled the new Hummer pickup last October and it is expected to go into production late this year as a 2022 model.
Two from Factory Zero
Like the pickup, the SUV will roll off the line at GM’s Factory Zero, a nearly 40-year-old plant in Detroit currently undergoing a multi-billion-dollar makeover. Once completed, it will solely assemble battery-electric vehicles. The GMC Hummer SUV is expected to enter production sometime between late 2022 and early 2023.
EV sales have been slowly growing, but demand is expected to gain momentum during the next several years with the launch of new products. AutoForecast Solutions anticipates Hummer SUV sales could reach 50,000 annually. GM claims it already has sold out a launch edition of the Hummer pickup. The automaker has declined to discuss overall sales targets for either model.
What’s in common
The GMC Hummer SUV will share the same Ultium platform as the pickup. That includes a new generation of lithium-ion batteries coming from a plant GM is setting up near Lordstown, Ohio in partnership with LG Chem. Range is expected to reach as high as 450 miles with an extended range battery pack option.
The Hummer SUV also will be offered with various powertrain alternatives, with a maximum of 1,000 horsepower out of the three-motor package.
The basic look of the two products is expected to be quite similar, but for the choice of open bed or closed cargo compartment. Among other things, the SUV also will share such features as removable roof panels first announced for the pickup.
Factory Zero is set to become one of four all-electric assembly plants GM has so far announced. With the automaker planning to eliminate internal combustion engines entirely by 2035, other plants are expected to go through conversions, as well. All told, GM plans to invest $27 billion to develop electric and autonomous vehicles by 2025. By then it expects to have 30 EVs available, though some will target specific regional markets, such as the U.S. or China.