With the debut of the new Hummer EV SUV, GMC has doubled the number of electric supertrucks it plans to bring to market over the next few years – part of the broader push by General Motors to have 30 all-electric vehicles in showrooms around the world by 2025.
The battery-powered SUV debuted during the widely watched NCAA Final Four basketball tournament Saturday. GMC formally introduced a pickup version of the Hummer last autumn, after teasing it during a 2020 Super Bowl spot.
The pickup version will come to market first, reaching U.S. showrooms by late this year, potentially beating Tesla’s own Cybertruck pickup to market. The Hummer SUV will be a 2024 model and is still about two years away from production.
Two are better than one
“To achieve greatness once is not the end of the journey; it’s only the beginning,” Basketball superstar LeBron James said during an unusual 90-second debut commercial for the Hummer SUV. “If one supertruck can change the world, imagine what two could do.”
The Hummer name was originally used by GM for a series of different SUVs starting with one based off the military’s own High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle, colloquially – and mercifully – shortened to HUMVEE. The Hummer brand launched in 1992 but was abandoned shortly after General Motors emerged from bankruptcy in 2009.
The name is being brought out of retirement, not the brand, however. Hummer will, going forward, be used for GMC’s line of large battery-electric trucks.
Lots in common
Both the 2022 GMC Hummer EV Pickup and 2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV will share a new, truck-oriented version of the General Motors Ultium platform, as well as the Ultium batteries set to be produced at a new factory the automaker is setting up in Lordstown, Ohio. The skateboard-like architecture mounts motors, battery pack and other drivetrain components under the floorboards, freeing up space for both passengers and cargo where a traditional engine compartment would have gone.
GMC plans to offer a number of different configurations for the two trucks, though the SUV won’t quite match the 1,000 horsepower Edition 1 package available at launch with the pickup. Not that buyers will have to settle for something lacking in performance.
The initial Edition 1 version of the hummer will use three motors to produce up to 830 horsepower and 11,500 pound-feet of torque, according to GM. In the “Watts to Freedom” mode, that will yield 0-60 launch times of an estimated 3.5 seconds.
GMC has yet to release cargo and towing capacity figures for either of the new Hummer EVs. But brand boss Duncan Aldred said the two battery-trucks “were envisioned to be the most capable and compelling electric supertrucks ever.
Describing it as “the next chapter,” Aldred noted that buyers will be available to choose from a wide range of trim levels using either two or three motors. The base model will still punch out 625 hp and 7,400 lb-ft of torque, according to GMC.
In an unusual move, GMC announced preliminary pricing for the SUV on Sunday, automakers more typically waiting until just before new models come to market. The at-launch Edition 1 will go for $110,595 – before adding in delivery fees — when it reaches showrooms early in 2023. That special version will offer virtually every option available for the Hummer EV SUV, including the “Extreme Off-Road Package.”
Regular versions will then range from $79,995 to $99,995 before options, taxes and delivery fees.
Eliminating range anxiety
The base model will go on sale in 2024 and will be fitted with what GMC described as a “16-module,” 400-volt battery pack yielding an estimated 250 miles or more range. Other versions will boost range as high as 300 or more miles with a 20-module pack believed to deliver as much as 200 kilowatt-hours fully charged.
The larger packs will operate at 800-volts, or twice that of the base Hummer EV SUV. Though more costly, the system will allow significantly faster charging, according to GM battery engineers. They estimated the pickup version will be able to add as much as 100 additional miles of range in just 10 minutes using the latest 350 kilowatt public fast chargers.
The two new Hummer EVs will have key technical details in common. That includes four-wheel steering which will allow the trucks to “crabwalk,” essentially moving diagonally around obstacles, whether rock-crawling or in tight urban settings. They also will share basic exterior details, such as the front-end light bar and their high-tech interiors.
More EVs in the works
In January, GM CEO Mary Barra announced that the automaker is increasing spending on battery-electric vehicles to $27 billion by mid-decade, a 30% increase from its prior target. The automaker introduced its first long-range model, the Chevrolet Bolt EV, in 2016. It is just launching a refreshed version of the hatchback, as well as a stretched SUV Bolt EUV. Among other products in the pipeline, GM confirmed it will bring to market the two Hummers, a separate all-electric pickup for Chevrolet, as well as two BEVs for Cadillac, the Lyriq SUV and the Celestiq supercar.
The very first Hummer pickup was sold last month at the Barrett-Jackson Auction in Scottsdale, Arizona for $2.5 million, money GM donated to charity.