We’ve heard about it for a while now, but the Hummer is now finally officially back – this time a whole lot quieter than all previous iterations. Gone are the loud and brawny fuel-guzzling internal combustion engines, because the new Hummer is actually an EV “supertruck”.
The headline of the new Hummer EV’s new Ultium Drive electric powertrain is its 1,000 horsepower output figure, derived from three electric motors. GMC also claims that the new Hummer EV has a massive 15,591 Nm of torque, but it’s best not to pay too much attention to that – it’s measured at the wheels (with transmission ratio multiplication) instead of at the driveshaft, so it’s intentionally misleading.
Based on the most common drive ratio of electric vehicles available on the market, the Hummer EV should have an “actual” torque figure nearer to the 2,000 Nm ball park – still a whole lot of twist, just nothing near the five-figure number provided by GMC. Anyway, we digress.
Power is provided from a double-stacked Ultium battery pack (of unknown capacity), which GMC estimates to enable a driving range of up to 563 km. The Hummer EV also supports 800-volt DC public quick charging at up to 350 kW, which equates to around 160 km of driving range from just 10 minutes of charging, according to GMC that is.
In terms of performance, the American company says that the Hummer EV does 0-96 km/h (60 mph) in “approximately three seconds” when put into the “Watts to Freedom” drive mode – yes, it’s really called that. Despite that impressive time especially when taken into account how heavy it must weigh (no official figures were given), the Hummer EV’s true prowess is when it’s taken off road.
The Hummer EV is equipped with a CrabWalk feature, which turns the rear wheels at the same angle as the front wheels at low speed, allowing the truck to move diagonally and get out of tricky terrain easier. The air suspensions, standard on the Hummer EV, is also capable of providing an additional 149 mm of lift in “Extract Mode”, helping it traverse across larger boulders or water hazards of up to 600 mm.
Bear in mind that the powertrain and features above are for the Edition 1 variant, which should begin deliveries in Autumn of 2021. The range-topping Edition 1 will be followed by a 800 hp/480 km range tri-motor Hummer EV3X a year later in 2022, a 480 hp/460 km dual-motor Hummer EV2X in 2023, and lastly a 480 hp/400 km dual-motor Hummer EV2 base variant in 2024.
If you think that batteries, sharp rocks, and water don’t sound particularly confidence-inducing when put together, there’s no need to worry as GMC has obviously thought of that. An extensive underbody armour made out of steel plates is designed to specifically protect the batteries.
There’s also the UltraVision underbody camera system with live “virtual spotter” views to help drivers navigate obstacles and place wheels more accurately off the beaten path. Speaking of cameras, the GMC Hummer EV can also be equipped with up to 18 cameras all round, which the company says is “best-in-class”.
In terms of styling, few cars on the road are as instantly-recognisable as a Hummer. The all-new Hummer EV takes on the iconic look, but reimagined with a “bold and futuristic” twist.
For example, the classic Hummer grille slats have been turned into a full-width LED light bar at the front, with each column housing a letter spelling out “Hummer”. From the launch video, it also seems like the light bar is used as a charge indicator with blue LED lights when plugged in.
The exterior design also doesn’t try to hide the Hummer EV’s offroad prowess one bit, as evident from the comically-oversized front skid plates and squared-off wheel arches, surrounding the large 35-inch all-terrain tyres. The extra structural rigidity provided by the Ultium batteries also allows for removable Infinity Roof panels, which can be stowed in the frunk storage compartment.
The boxy motif is also mirrored throughout the cabin, giving the Hummer EV’s interior a super utilitarian look and feel. Staying true to its name, the 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and 13.4-inch infotainment screens come with off-road-specific widgets that display the vehicle’s functions and terrain status, such as torque output, differential locker engagement, tyre pressure, pitch and roll angles including maximum values, drift gauge, friction circle, and torque vectoring, among others.
The Edition 1 also gets a MultiPro tailgate that can be set to six different “functional positions”, along with power-operated rear glass window and tonneau cover. The Edition 1 Hummer EV will also come with the latest version of the Super Cruise advanced driver assistance feature, offering hands-free driving on more than 322,000 km of enabled roads, and a new automatic lane changing feature.