Hummer returns as an electric pickup truck

NEW BITAIN, Conn. — For years, Hummer was a brand that stood for the opposite of “green” driving. Then it disappeared, a victim of General Motors’ 2010 bankruptcy.

Today it is back. The Hummer name is now on a battery-electric pickup truck that will go from zero to 60 mph in about three seconds and is rolling into GMC dealerships around the country. One of the first to arrive in New England was a white launch model that arrived March 24 at Gallagher GMC in New Britain, with an MSRP of $114,000.

This particular truck will be delivered to its new owner on Saturday.

Mike Gallagher, president of Gallagher Buick GMC, was excited to finally see the truck in person. Gallagher GMC is one of a select group of dealers for the brand that have been selected to sell and service Hummers, which will be a sub-brand of GMC, rather than a standalone. The new vehicle only shares the name with the one from a decade ago. The dealer had to invest in training and tools. For example, all forklifts must be EV-compatible.

“I was very impressed when it came off the truck and saw it maneuver into the building, with the Quadra Steer in a silent manner,” Gallagher said.

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The launch edition will be joined by an SUV model and other pickup versions in the next few years that won’t carry such a hefty price tag. Edition 1 has distinctive gold details. It has Easter eggs themed after the Apollo 11 moon landing. The October 2021 launch edition sold out within a day, according to industry reports.

The original version of the truck has three engines producing 1,000 horsepower and has a range of 329 miles. It is a new design from the ground up and is built in a rebuilt and upgraded factory in Hamtramck, Michigan that previously built GM sedans.

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The Hummer will hit the market at the same time as the all-electric Rivian R1T, which Gallagher sees as its main competitor. The dimensions of the two vehicles are within fractions of an inch when compared.

  • Rivian R1T – Length 217.1 in Height 78.2 in Wheelbase 135.8 inches
  • Hummer EV – Length 216.8″ Height 79.1″ Wheelbase 135.6″

Ford’s battery-powered F-150 Lightning is slightly larger and targets a different market. Ford will sell everything from a fleet version that starts around $40,000 to fully equipped versions that top out in the $95,000 neighborhood. A GMC Sierra with an internal combustion engine is longer too. For now, until they sell more EVs, Ford and Rivian will qualify for an EV tax break, while Hummer will not.

Gallagher said the typical customer is not so typical.

“The majority of these people, I can pretty much tell this is not a first vehicle. This is not a second vehicle, it may not even be a third vehicle,” he said. “It could be a fourth vehicle or a fifth vehicle. A car enthusiast, for sure.”

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The truck has been designed with off-road driving in mind. It has four-wheel steering with a crab walk that allows the Hummer to move diagonally. There is an adaptive suspension that can raise the truck by six inches. It has a full range of cameras, front, back, sides and bottom. It sits on specially made Goodyear 35 in tires.

Gallagher said the typical GMC buyer is a professional, likely a higher educated business owner, “It’s understated. It’s professional. It’s quality, performance, value, but not to rub it in your face.”

The interior can best be described as durable yet robust luxury. From the easy-to-clean floors to the two screens that control main functions and provide readings, to the bed cover that rolls back at the touch of a button, to the removable roof panels, an owner won’t rough it.

Despite current challenges in the automotive industry, Gallagher is optimistic, “When you look at what the landscape is like, right now, whether it’s an internal combustion engine, when it’s electric, whether it’s diesel, whether it’s gas, whatever it is. What a great summary of fantastic products.”

Doug Stewart is a digital content producer at FOX61 News. He can be reached at dstewart@fox61.com.

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