Hummers have always been chock-full of attitude. General Motors derived the Hummer from AM General’s High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV), which was shortened to just Humvee by the troops who drove them. Of course, the civilian Hummer just kind of looked like the military version, but was based on other GM SUVs.
The original Hummer line came and went, GM abandoning it as it emerged from bankruptcy a dozen years ago. But it bet there was plenty of equity left in the name as it began shifting to battery power. And revived as part of the GMC brand, Hummer serves as the totem demonstrating what all-electric propulsion can muster.
After spending a week with the topline Edition 1 version of the 2022 GMC Hummer EV Pickup, (the 2023s haven’t been released yet), here’s what we discovered.
The GMC Hummer EV is GM’s first vehicle based on the Ultium dedicated EV platform, and like its namesake, it’s designed to be full of attitude and over-the-top in every way possible.
Weighing in at about 9,000 pounds and capable of a 0-60 sprint in 3 seconds flat, the Hummer is an apocalyptic EV, about as far from the Chevy Bolt EV as it’s possible to get. It’s alluring, a little bit ridiculous, and it absolutely had to be this way.
The GMC Hummer EV carries the same military-chic looks as other off-road style vehicles. The trend harks back to the original Jeeps of the second world war. Like a Willys, and the later Humvee, the Hummer is squared off and looks like you’re going to go bouncing into battle.
The pickup version has a full crew cab and a smallish bed. GMC will gladly sell you a frame to mount an extra spare tire in the bed if the Hummer doesn’t look macho enough as it is. Oh, you also get GMC’s MultiPro 6-way tailgate, too.
The Hummer’s beat-you-on-the-head machismo continues in the cabin, with plenty of grab handles and a topographical map inspiration for the decor. Items like the shifter are big and blocky, and everything you see and touch says that this is a go-anywhere vehicle.
But for all that, the Hummer is quite comfortable, and you get luxury touches like a heated steering wheel. Of course, the roof comes off in several panels, which stow neatly in the forward trunk where the engine would normally be.
Hummer’s powertrain consists of three electric motors; one in the front and two at the back, giving you full-time four-wheel drive. But the old paradigms of gas-engine 4WD no longer apply. There is no “low range” lever or switch, because the Hummer doesn’t need the torque multiplying effect of a transfer case. Electric motors deliver their maximum torque at low speeds, so the Hummer just goes, with all four wheels clawing for grip and allocating power as needed. The front wheels use computer-controlled locking to get the power down, while the dual motors in the rear operate independently, giving you the best “locking differential” when you need it, and independent operation when you don’t. Whether you’re on the freeway or climbing a rock, the Hummer knows what to do.
Taken together, the three motors give the Hummer 1,000 horsepower and 1,200 pound-feet of torque at the motors, geared down to 11,500 pound-feet at the wheels. With of all that torque, the heavyweight Hummer can win some drag races with a 0-60 time of 3 seconds flat using its “Watts to Freedom” or cutely summarized “WTF” mode. The official range of the Hummer is 329 miles, but that assumes you’re not doing those 0-60 blastoffs all the time. Those will use up your battery pretty quick.
If you need to tow a trailer, the Hummer will pull up to 7,500 pounds, and carry up to 1,300 pounds in its bed. That makes this radical EV a usable vehicle for the typical things we do with pickups and SUVs.
Safety and Technology
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety have not yet rated the Hummer. However, it’s got state-of-the-art safety equipment, including GM’s Super Cruise hands-free assistive driving, which encompasses virtually all the advanced driver assistance services available today.
One feature to call out is the camera system. The Hummer offers 18 different camera views, including underbody cameras pointed forward and backward to show you if you’re close to scratching the skid plate with a rock. More useful are the front tire views, and the forward-looking view from the front bumper. The cameras that look at each front tire help you place the Hummer with millimeter accuracy when running an off-road trail. The bumper cam eliminates the forward blind spot, and gives you guidelines showing where the Hummer is going. You can take the Hummer on the most technical trails with absolute precision, even without a spotter.
A digital instrument cluster is standard, and you get GM’s biggest 13.4-inch infotainment touchscreen. Wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay is standard, but the native operating system for the infotainment includes Google Maps, Google Assistant, and Google Play. All of that is voice controlled with “Hey Google,” which is tremendously convenient. Wireless charging is also standard with a spacious charging pad.
Hummer is designed to make an impression, and it definitely does that. The basic driving experience is very much that of a capable off-road vehicle. It’s smooth and comfortable on the road, but those big off-road tires definitely make themselves known.
We can’t talk about driving impressions without talking about the Hummer’s unique steering. This vehicle uses the most advanced four-wheel steering system ever offered by any automaker. The front wheels steer the Hummer like any other truck, but the rear wheels can also steer up to 10 degrees in either direction. When you’re maneuvering at low speed on a trail or in a tight parking lot, the rear wheels turn opposite to the front wheels, giving the very large Hummer the turning radius of a subcompact car. What you notice when driving is that the Hummer is incredibly nimble and smooth for its size, and it’s much easier to drive accurately than most large SUVs.
But there’s more to the steering than that. Because the rear wheels can steer in either direction, you can also tell the Hummer to “crab walk.” This feature allows the rear wheels to turn in the same direction as the front wheels, so the Hummer moves in a diagonal line. The effect is a little eerie at first, but can be useful if you need to move the whole vehicle sideways in a short space. It’s good for parallel parking if you have enough space.
Keeping the focus on the underside of the Hummer, the suspension uses air bags to allow you to adjust the ride height. So you can settle the Hummer down for freeway driving, placing the motor and battery weight very low for a super stable ride. Then if you select off-road or terrain driving modes, the Hummer can raise itself up a bit for rough surfaces. There’s even an extreme “Extract” mode that really jacks up the suspension to clear big obstacles. The Hummer can drive through 32 inches of water in this mode. Serious off-roaders will also note that the underside of the Hummer is one big, flat skid plate. There’s no oil pan or transfer case to get damaged on a rock, and no exhaust pipe to get ripped loose.
Overall, you’ll never get away from the Hummer’s impressive size and weight, but for all that, GMC did a great job making Hummer usable and enjoyable. GMC wanted to make its first EV something unlike any other vehicle in the world, which is why it had to be this way. For all the people who thought EVs were going to be for ostentatiously eco-conscious tofu-eating ascetics, the Hummer was designed and built specifically to blow their minds.
2022 GMC Hummer EV Pickup Edition 1
|Dimension||L: 217 inches/W: 87 inches/H: 79 inches/Wheelbase: 135.6 inches|
|Powertrain||Three electric motors yielding four-wheel drive|
|Performance Specs||1,000 horsepower and 1,200 lb-ft of torque|
|Price||Base price: $108,700; As tested: $110,295 including $1,595 destination charge|
|On-Sale Date||Available to order now|
The GMC Hummer EV Pickup doesn’t have a trim walk in the usual sense. GMC is still sending Hummer buyers to a special website where you can fill out a form to be contacted about buying one, eventually. Word on the street is that the Hummer is sold out through 2023 and if you can get on the list, you’ll likely get a 2024 model.
The Hummer we spent a week with was the 2022 Edition 1, which is priced at $108,700, or $110,295 once the $1,595 destination fee is added. Given that dealers are adding large markups to that MSRP, and flippers have been selling the Hummer for whatever the market can bear, if you can get one close to that price, we say jump on it.
2022 GMC Hummer EV Pickup – Frequently Asked Questions
How fast is the GMC Hummer EV?
A 0-60 mph time of about 3 seconds would be impressive in any vehicle, but is mind-blowing for a 9,000-pound pickup truck. Its top speed is wisely governed to 106 mph, which is probably more than fast enough for a vehicle this size and weight.
Is the Hummer bulletproof?
No. Not even the military HMMWV is bulletproof.
How long is the wait for a Hummer EV?
Anyone looking to buy the GMC Hummer EV is in for a long wait. The all-electric supertruck and SUV are sold out for at least the next two years, according to GM Authority. Even if you’ve already reserved the EV, you may be waiting until 2024 for delivery.