Is Anyone Really Going to Buy an Electric Hummer?
We know all, or at least most, of the details about the upcoming GMC Hummer EV. And General Motors has staked a lot on its success.
But will anyone actually buy it?
That’s a thornier question than you might think. It seems, on the surface of it, that the Hummer will sell in strong numbers.
After all, the previous vehicle was quite popular, at least until gas prices shot through the roof (the brand reorganization/culling forced by a federally managed bankruptcy also helped spell doom, obviously). That obviously won’t be a problem for an electric vehicle.
Still, challenges remain. The Hummer likely won’t be cheap ( GM also says no haggling), and charging infrastructure for EVs is in its infancy, as we’ve noted in two recent electric-vehicle reviews.
Will people not consider a Hummer as rugged and macho as models past due to its EV powertrain? Will environmentalists point out that even being an EV, a large SUV like the Hummer might still be harmful to the environment? Has the Hummer’s time simply passed, as we move into a world more centered on smaller crossovers?
There will also be the usual concerns about range to go along with any other concerns buyers might have when it comes to a still relatively new technology. There may also be concerns about the performance of an electric powertrain in off-road situations.
On the other hand, the Edition 1 is already sold out. That may not be a harbinger of popularity – some folks just feel the need to be first – but certainly, GMC is probably happy with that news.
A quick reminder on the specs, at least as pertains to the Edition 1: GMC is promising 1,000 horsepower, 11,500 lb-ft of torque, two drive units, and three electric motors. Naturally, the Hummer will have four-wheel drive. Fast charging will be available, with GM promising up to 100 miles in 10 minutes.
Range is pegged at 350 miles, perhaps more.
An available Crab Walk feature will allow for diagonal movement at low speeds, and SuperCruise hands-free driving will be available, as well. Other key features will include the MultiPro multifunction tailgate, adaptive damping, the ability to have open-air driving, drive modes, skid plates, power tonneau cover, large infotainment screen, thirty-five-inch tires, adaptive air suspension, underbody cameras, and off-road-specific instrumentation.
Base models will follow later, with 625 horsepower, 7,400 lb-ft of torque, and at least 250 miles of range with a two-motor system. An EV 2X trim will have 300 miles of range.
Pricing will start at $79,995 for base models, but those won’t even be on the market until 2024. EV 3 trims go on sale in fall 2022 with a base price of $99,995. The $89,995 EV 2X follows in the spring of 2023. Production begins in the fall of this year, and the Edition 1 starts at $112,995.
We asked GMC directly if they’d venture a guess on sales numbers, but they politely declined to speculate. Still, they did remind us that reservations for the Edition 1 were full in about 10 minutes.
There won’t be federal tax incentives on the Hummer EV, however.
Our take? People will buy this truck unless economic calamity strikes and makes the pricing challenging. Charging infrastructure is improving, and with some trims offering 300 or more miles of range, range anxiety will be less of a factor.
The GMC Hummer EV will be the hot new status symbol on Hollywood Boulevard, if not in the woods.
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- David S. Bear Tooth and Chief Joseph highways.
As long as it's simultaneously both expensive and practically useless, it will no doubt sell in profitable absolute numbers to the yahoos on Fed welfare who are the market for overpriced, rather pointless nonsense these days. What it won't do, is make a meaningful difference to anything more practically meaningful than being vehicle number 306 in Leno's garage. Leno's cool though. As may the Hummer be. Perhaps he'll get one, in order to find out. If nothing else, I doubt it's meaningfully less practically useful, than similarly Flash Gordon'esque turbine cars and the like.
The battery packs are sealed (and water cooled) to the same standards as other automotive stuff. ICE vehicles also have severe problems when ambient and/or cooling water leaks into the crankcase or the intake (hydro lock), so this issue is not unique to EVs. This kind of sealing works. Here's a video of a Nissan Leaf fording deep water: https://youtu.be/Y9plRzRZ_PY An EV is likely a better choice in deep water, due to its inherent immunity to hydro locking the engine. No cylinders means no snorkel needed.