2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV: It Takes All Sorts to Make A World

Strong points
  • Riveting performance
  • Impressive technologies and capabilities
  • Definitely an eye-catcher
Weak points
  • Stratospheric energy consumption
  • Noisy cabin (wind)
Full report

With electrification well underway in the automotive world, it's fair to say that, without being spoiled for choice, there's a bit of everything out there right now. Yes, small electric SUVs seem to be the priority for major automakers, but sedans like the Tesla Model 3 also top the charts.

We say that it takes all sorts to make a world. So here's the GMC Hummer EV, a name dusted off the cobwebs by General Motors to create what the automaker calls the first (and only) "hypertruck." Some call it a perfect example of over-the-top electrification, others an engineering marvel.

Photo: Louis-Philippe Dubé

Whichever side you’re on, the buzz around the Hummer EV is undeniable; GMC has as many as 90,000 reservations on the order book. And what's even more telling is that 70% of those reservations are first-time electric vehicle buyers...

Last year, the Car Guide ventured to the Arizona desert to test the Hummer EV pickup truck in its Edition 1 variant. This year, we invited the Hummer Edition 1’s SUV version to California's Napa wine country to show us its capabilities.

The Ultimate Ultium Platform

The GMC Hummer EV SUV uses the largest Ultium platform available at General Motors. At the heart of this platform is a 20-module battery that powers almost all variants. This battery is slightly smaller than the one found in the Hummer EV pickup variant, which contains 24 modules and deploys a usable power of 212 kWh.

Armed with a trio of electric motors, two in the rear and one in the front, it outputs a combined 830 horsepower and 1,200 lb-ft of torque. That's less power than the pickup truck variant, which ranks in at 1000 horsepower.

Photo: Louis-Philippe Dubé

The Hummer EV SUV can still sprint from 0 to 96 km/h in 3.5 seconds instead of 3 seconds for the pickup, while top range sits at 480 kilometres instead of 530. All in all, that's still more than respectable for a 9,000-pound vehicle.

When it comes to charging, 160 kilometres of range can be recovered in 14 minutes when hooked up to a 350 kW Level 3 charging station. In technical terms, the charging capacity ranges from 117 to 270 kW throughout the charge, depending on battery conditioning.

With the vehicle's 7.7 kW charger plugged into a 240-volt outlet, it will take 8 hours to get that 160 kilometres back. However, a 19.2 kW charger is available as an option, which reduces this time to just over 3 hours.

Photo: Louis-Philippe Dubé

Taking Charge of the Road

The Hummer EV SUV doesn't just make a bold impression with its boxy retro looks, it also leads the charge with the technologies it includes. Electric vehicles have allowed the industry to get rid of a lot of mechanical components, like drive shafts and differentials that connect the front and rear, leaving everything to wires and computers. This improves the response and also limits weight gains.

That response can be felt through the Hummer EV's blistering acceleration on the road, as it seems to catapult itself into space by crouching backwards with its nose practically pointed at the sky. The locking differentials are "virtual" and translate this instantaneous response in the trail for surprisingly nimble off-road driving despite the vehicle's weight.

The Hummer EV SUV’s wheelbase is 9 inches shorter than that of the pickup truck version. It looks big, but its four-wheel steering allows it to limit its turning radius to 10.8 metres, which is almost as tight as a Chevrolet Bolt... There's also an air suspension in charge of navigating the Hummer EV SEV in the corners. We'd be lying if we told you that the Hummer EV doesn't exhibit its share of body roll. But considering its size, this effect seems to be somewhat controlled. As for braking... watch your distances!

Photo: Louis-Philippe Dubé

Shocking Energy Consumption

Not everything that's electric is necessarily green. With a recorded consumption between 35 and 40 kW/100 km, the Hummer EV is quite irresponsible. Blame it on its boxy aerodynamics, as well as its various drive modes that strongly encourage excessive use of the right pedal.

The Hummer EV SUV's palatial interior has plenty of room to spare. The instrument cluster and infotainment screens display information with crystal-clear graphics, courtesy of the Unreal engine that doesn't skimp on pleasantly entertaining visual effects. As for practicality, this infotainment system is easy to use in general and is complete in terms of apps and features. GMC wanted to keep the ventilation controls as manual levers underneath the screen, but these controls seemed quite confusing to us at the beginning of our drive.

Photo: Louis-Philippe Dubé

The cargo area is capable gobbling up to 1,017 litres of cargo in the normal configuration, and up to 2,317 litres with the rear seats folded down. But beware of its much higher sill height when compared to a traditional SUV, which forced us to catapult our suitcases like reckless luggage handlers.

This Thing Will Grow on You…

At the end of our drive, we found ourselves in a love-hate relationship with the Hummer EV SUV. On the one hand, it’s a spotless representation of modern consumerism, like an opulent pile of materials that happily abuses the resources it is entrusted with. On the other hand, its eye-catching looks, riveting performance and earthmoving capabilities are so impressive that it quickly becomes... endearing!

Photo: Louis-Philippe Dubé

At a price that starts at $108,598 and can go up to $154,193 (including shipping), we're also forced to admit that you get a good bang for your buck here, all things considered. And since it takes all sorts to make a world, the Hummer EV SUV is an inevitability in the electric transition of the automotive world - and a guilty sin we love to hate (and hate to love!)

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