During a widely watched Super Bowl commercial, General Motors announced plans to bring back Hummer – albeit as part of the GMC brand. It turns out there’s more to the story.
- Hummer is a corruption of the military’s High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle, often shortened and pronounced “Humvee.”
- GM bought the civilian brand from AM General in 1998.
- It shuttered Hummer after emerging from bankruptcy in 2009.
Hummer has had a long and complex history, starting out as a military vehicle, then a civilian variation. After GM bought the brand in 1998 it produced a series of models before abandoning Hummer and three other brands in order to win a federal bailout and emerge from bankruptcy in 2009.
In its original civilian form, Hummer was a brand environmentalists loved to hate. Now, GM is betting it will become one of their darlings.
Rather than reviving the Hummer brand, the name will be used for what’s to become an all-electric flagship for the GMC brand, officials announced during a media backgrounder.
The all-new Hummer was teased during a flashy Super Bowl ad, but that only hinted at part of the story, focusing on the coming Hummer SUT. It turns out it has a sibling, the Hummer SUV.
The original Hummer (H1 shown here) was Public Enemy #1 for environmentalists. (Photo: GM)
The pickup will get a formal, public debut on May 20 and will be GM’s first all-new, all-electric model to come to market next year. It’s not clear how soon the SUV version will follow.
Using one of three new GM electric architectures, both models will be offered with a variety of drivetrain options, including a three-motor package making 1,000 horsepower and 11,000 lb-ft of torque.
Their interiors will share a “lunar module” design theme, with graphics representing the moon’s Sea of Tranquility on their speakers.
As GMC’s flagship models, pricing likely won’t be cheap.
WHY THIS MATTERS
GM officials claim they’re on “a path to an all-electric future,” and that covers everything from entry models to big pickups and SUVs. That said, it likely will be a while before the most demanding, heavy-duty models go all-electric, acknowledged GM President Mark Reuss.