General Motors, as it promised, is expanding its heavyweight EV lineup with an SUV version of the GMC Hummer electric pickup introduced several months ago.
Like the pickup, the 2024 Hummer SUV will launch with a high-powered, fully-loaded version with up to 300 miles of range and a starting price in excess of $100,000.
GMC is following the same rollout schedule—top trim to bottom—with the Hummer SUV as with the pickup. The company also is using the same pitchman for the SUV as it did for the pickup: NBA star LeBron James. The Los Angeles Lakers standout introduced the Hummer EV SUV in a video that aired during Saturday’s NCAA Final Four collegiate basketball playoffs.
Unlike the pickup, on which it is based, the SUV’s inaugural Edition 1 trim—available in early spring of 2023—boasts a mere 830 peak horsepower and a 3.5-second elapsed time for zero-to-60 mph sprints using the Watts for Power mode.
The Edition 1 Hummer pickup, which launches late this year, has 1,000 horsepower and a 3 second zero-to- 60 time with the “Watts” mode engaged. That’s GM’s version of Tesla’s Ludicrous mode and essentially uses an extra surge of power from the lithium-ion battery pack to briefly supercharge the electric drive motors.
The electric SUV also launches with a slightly lower price than the pickup. All that horsepower costs money even in electric vehicles.
Trims, Prices and Rollout
The Edition 1 SUV will start at $105,595, jumping to $110,595 with the “Extreme Off-Road Package,” the only available option. The Edition 1 pickup, which comes with the added off-road equipment and a slightly larger battery pack offering up to 350 miles of range, starts at $112,595. (All prices include GM’s destination charge.)
Following the Edition 1 by a month or more will be the late spring 2023 introductions of the two mid-level versions GMC expects to be the most popular. The Hummer EV SUV 3X trim, also with 830 horsepower, will start at $99,995, and the 2X trim, with 625-horsepower and 7,400 pound-feet of torque, will start at $89,995.
The base Hummer EV SUV (no X), also with 625 horsepower and 7,400 pound-feet, will launch a full year later in the spring of 2024 at a starting price of $79,995.
Like the Edition 1, the SUV’s 2X and 3X trims have GM-estimated range of 300 miles (adding the extreme off-roading package cuts that to 280 miles). The base trim gets a 250-mile battery pack as standard equipment but can be upgraded to the 300-mile pack.
Off-Road Prowess Touted
While an SUV typically is marketed as a people and cargo carrier, GMC—General Motors’ upscale truck division—initially is promoting the Hummer SUV’s off-road capabilities, as it has done with the Hummer EV pickup.
While there will be more than 200 accessories in the Hummer SUV catalog, the only actual option other than an extended-range battery for the base trim is the off-road package, available with the 2X, 3X and Edition 1 versions.
It boosts the “regular” Hummer SUV’s already considerable off-road capabilities by replacing the Edition 1’s 22-inch alloys with rugged 18-inch wheel mounted with 35-inch mud-terrain tires.
Highway comfort and range will suffer but the big, heavy-lugged “MT” tires will take a pounding on rugged off-road surfaces and supply the sticky grip needed to clamber over smooth rocks and through slick mud and snow.
The off-road option also adds underbody armor, rock sliders along the sides of the vehicle, beneath the rocker panels, and a camera system that provides underbody views to help drivers avoid potentially damaging rocks and other obstacles.
The package includes an electronic locking front differential and “virtual lockers” on the rear wheels. The virtual locker system provides for electronically controlled torque vectoring to limit rear wheel slip by directing up to 100% of the available power to the wheel with the most traction.
GM hasn’t shared much other detail but will release more information about the electric SUV’s features and specifications on Monday.
The company makes no secret, however, of the fact that the Hummer SUV shares its platform and many of the same powertrain, suspension and interior components with the Hummer pickup. Indeed, it appears that the only difference in exterior design is that the SUV’s roofline, sides and tailgate extend to enclose the area that forms the pickup’s bed.
Super Cruise and More
The shared components mean that the SUV, like the pickup, can be ordered with the latest version of GM’s Super Cruise hands free driving system. It permits automated driving and lane changing on more than 200,000 miles of enabled roads in the U.S.
While the driver’s hands don’t have to be on the wheel when Super Cruise is active, in-cabin camera monitors eye motion to ensure the driver is paying attention to the road ahead.
The SUV also will share the pickup’s glass-panel roof, most of its interior and exterior parts and its all-wheel steering system, standard on all but the base mode, as well as available features such as Crab Walk and Extract Mode.
The first system uses all-wheel steering to permit the Hummer SUV to drive diagonally away from obstacles at slow off-road speeds—essentially scuttling sideways like a crab.
Extract Mode raises the body to increase ground clearance to 15.9 inches from the standard 10.1 inches. By comparison, the Jeep Gladiator Mojave four-door pickup comes from the factory with 11.6 inches of ground clearance and the Grand Cherokee Limited 4X4 SUV has 8.6 inches.
Small Competitive Set
The Jeeps, however, shouldn’t compete for the same shoppers as the much pricier Hummer EVs.
Competitors such as start-ups Rivian and Bollinger Motors, each with high-end and ruggedly capable electric pickups and SUVs, along with Tesla and its electric Cybertruck pickup, are more likely to attract the well-heeled outdoor enthusiasts GMC is aiming to bag with its Hummer models.
Both the Rivan and Bollinger trucks have pricing, power, capabilities and features similar to various of the Hummer trim levels. Tesla hasn’t announced an SUV version of the Cybertruck, but the pickup’s specifications should make it a player as well in what is so far a small segment—the electric super-truck—of the ever-growing EV market.
Powertrains Vary with Trim
The 3X and Edition 1 trims use GM’s new Ultium battery system with 20 modules (versus 24 modules for the Edition 1 pickup) and a three-motor drive system—one on the front axle and two in the rear—one driving each wheel.
The 2X trim uses dual motors—one on each axle—and a 20-module Ultium battery. The base trim also has two motors but gets a 16-module battery pack as standard equipment. It can be upgraded to a 20-module system.
All trims from 2X up have 800-volt DC fast charging capable of adding energy to the battery pack at speeds of up to 300 kilowatts per hour. That allows for super-quick replenishment of depleted batteries at properly sized fast-charge stations.
The dual-motor base trim uses a 400-volt system, the most common fast-charging standard for EVs right now. Its 16-module battery pack is good for 250 miles according to GM’s internal estimates.
Official EPA range estimates for the various trim levels won’t be issued until closer to the start of production.
GM is taking reservations for the SUV on the GMC.com/HummerEV website.