GMC to launch electric Hummer SUV in 2023

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DETROIT — GMC is expanding the Hummer EV lineup with an SUV, a more urban and family-oriented version of the 2022 pickup, and will begin sales with a special launch model priced at more than $100,000.

The 2024 Hummer SUV Edition 1, which General Motors plans to start building in early 2023, is powered by the company’s proprietary Ultium battery. It will have a range of about 300 miles, 830 hp and a GM-estimated 11,500 pound-foot of torque, to power from 0 to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds.

GMC unveiled the SUV in a commercial Saturday during the NCAA Men’s Final Four basketball tournament. The ad, narrated by NBA star LeBron James, highlights signature Hummer features, such as Extract Mode and CrabWalk, GMC said. Reservations for the Hummer SUV opened at 5 p.m. Eastern on Saturday.

“GMC Hummer EVs were envisioned to be the most capable and compelling electric supertrucks ever,” Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick and GMC, said in a statement. “The new Hummer EV SUV is the next chapter, offering more options for customers to tailor the truck to their lifestyles, while continuing to encourage them to forge new paths with zero emissions.”

The return of Hummer is shaping up to be gold mine for GM, which dropped the brand after failing to find a buyer during its 2009 bankruptcy.

The first Hummer EV pickup produced was auctioned off for charity late last month for $2.5 million, or $1.5 million more than the first 2021 Ford Bronco fetched from the same auctioneer. GM says reservations for the Hummer Edition 1 pickup, priced from $112,595, are also sold out.

Forecasting firm AutoForecast Solutions expects GM to produce 1,200 Hummer pickups in 2022. It goes on sale late this year.

GMC has not confirmed volume targets or where the Hummer SUV will be assembled but AFS says GM will build the SUV at Factory Zero in Detroit, alongside the pickup. GM plans to build 23,000 GMC Hummer SUVs per year once production is ramped up, AFS said.

The Edition 1 model will start at $105,595, $7,000 less than Edition 1 of the Hummer pickup, including destination fees. Customers can add an off-road package, which comes standard on the Edition 1 of the Hummer pickup, for $5,000.

Edition 1 comes standard with 22-inch premium wheels, assist steps and floor liners. The Extreme Off-Road package adds 18-inch wheels and 35-inch tires, underbody armor and rock sliders, front and rear electronic locking differentials and Ultravision with underbody camera views.

The other trims — 3X, 2X and 2 — range in price from $99,995 to $79,995 and come with a 250-300 mile range. The off-road package is available on the 3X and 2X trims. The lower trims are scheduled to launch between spring 2023 and spring 2024.

Each of the SUV’s four trims comes standard with an enhanced version of GM’s Super Cruise driver-assist technology, along with a new automatic lane changing feature.

The SUV features rugged styling and a rear design different from the pickup, with a mounted full-size spare tire.

The interior layout is similar to the pickup, with five seats and a large rear cargo area. It comes standard with an infinity roof with removable sky panels, and nearly 200 additional accessories will be available at launch, GMC said.

Adding an SUV version of the electric Hummer “will now appeal to the conspicuously green buyer just as the original appealed to the conspicuous consumer of the 1990s,” said Sam Fiorani, vice president of global vehicle forecasting at AFS. “It could find an audience who [wasn’t] even looking for an electric vehicle and tie them into Hummer family, much like the Model S did for Tesla. Making an electric vehicle appealing to a wide audience isn’t about making it a good electric vehicle but more about using the electric drivetrain to make it a great vehicle.”

Howard Drake, dealer principal at Buick-GMC Sherman Oaks in Sherman Oaks, Calif., already has 231 reservations booked for the Hummer pickup and expects high order volumes to continue with the SUV. When Drake was a Hummer dealer in the 1990s, he sold more SUV variants.

“The SUV was infinitely more popular and for most people, more practical,” he said. “My sense is based on history more people will take the SUV because most people would rather have a closed space than a bed.”

Will Churchill, dealer principal at Frank Kent Country, a Buick-GMC-Chevrolet-Cadillac store in Corsicana, Texas, suspects that some customers have been holding out for the SUV.

Many customers were drawn to the Hummer pickup because of the Hummer name. Others reserved it because it is a pickup, but there are some potential buyers who have held off until now because they weren’t looking for a pickup.

“The SUV, I think, will pick up the balance of those people,” he said. Even before the SUV was revealed, Churchill’s customers had been asking about it.

“It will continue to lift the brand and make GMC one of the top brands in the industry,” he said.

Since some Hummer competitors such as Rivian or Tesla don’t have a dealership network, buying an EV for the first time can be a gamble, he said.

For new automakers, EVs are the first vehicles they’ve built. Customers may wonder whether the automaker has staying power, said Churchill.

“With the Hummer being backed by GM and GMC, you know it’s been through all the stringent testing,” he said. “You know there will be a manufacturer there for you in the long term.”

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