If America were a vehicle it would be the GMC Hummer EV pickup truck.

The rolling contradiction just might be the single best and worst vehicle I’ve ever driven. It wraps all of GM’s EV knowhow into one massive, incredibly heavy, wildly inefficient, hilariously expensive, yet unbelievably awesome and physics-defying package.

On paper, and in the metal, the GMC Hummer EV has unseated the Ram 1500 TRX as peak pickup truck

Here are the pros and cons of the GMC Hummer EV after spending a long weekend WTFing (Watts To Freedoming, what did you think I meant?), attending MN Cars & Coffee, hitting up Costco, and taking the kids to the pool.

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

Pro: Hummer EV makes electric cool

Nobody brags about a Chevrolet Bolt EV or Nissan Leaf, but people I encountered who didn’t even care about cars or EVs went nuts over the Hummer EV. It stole attention away from a Ford GT and Lamborghini Aventador at MN C&C (Minnesota Cars & Coffee), surely hurting egos. It has T-tops (and they fit in the front trunk), rolls on 35-inch Mud Terrain tires, and offers up to 15.9 inches of ground clearance. With bulging fenders and a wide stance, it looks like a cartoon creation or a Hot Wheels truck brought to life in the best possible way, just like the Ford Bronco Raptor. The child in me can’t help but giggle. The adult in me is like, “Bro, a bit much, no?” 

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

Con: Hummer EV guzzles energy

The Hummer weighs so much that it doesn’t require EPA efficiency ratings. GM said based on the EPA-cycle the Hummer EV Edition 1 has 329 miles of range. That’s thanks to a massive 205-kwh battery pack that’s twice the size or more of even the bigger batteries offered in most EVs, not because it’s efficient. Over the course of 164 miles of mixed suburban driving, the Hummer EV averaged 1.6 mi/kwh. While that efficiency would math to 339 miles of range, it’s still an energy guzzler for an EV. That efficiency is worse than an F-150 Lighting in sub-zero weather. What can you expect from a 7-foot-wide, 9,000-pound brick cutting through the air on 35-inch Mud Terrain tires?

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

Pro: Hummer EV overpowers physics

The specs on paper create a wild driving experience. The Hummer EV weighs a lot more than heavy-duty pickups, yet it pulled wheelies during development thanks to three motors and 1,000 hp. It rips from 0-60 mph in 3.0 second using Watts To Freedom (WTF) mode, which is an exhilarating experience. When you put it in WTF mode, the suspension lowers, the driver seat vibrates, and childish noises blare through the speakers as the vehicle attempts to make you feel like you’re launching into outer space. The sensation of all that mass lurching forward drops your gut as the weight shifts, the front end rises (but doesn’t get off the ground), and the rear end squats down on the thick-sidewall tires. 

GMC Hummer EV – Photo by Steve Bernstein

GMC Hummer EV – Photo by Steve Bernstein

The Crab Walk feature utilizes the rear-wheel steering system to let the Hummer EV drive diagonally. My body attempted to reconcile with the fact the vehicle was moving in what felt like an unnatural way. The rear-wheel steering also enables a see-it-to-believe-it turning circle of 37.1 feet. As a reference, the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 crew cab short bed, which is 15.1 inches longer, requires 46.9 feet to turn around. I was able to turn the 216.8-inch long Hummer EV around on a two-lane road to make a U-turn without having to make a Y-turn. One note of caution: That rear-wheel steering system can make the rear end turn-in quicker than expected, which meant I had to keep a close eye on the rear quarter panel and wheel placement going up and down an enclosed parking ramp.

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

Con: Hummer EV costs a lot

The Hummer EV Edition 1 I tested was a 2022 model, but it’s a carryover for 2023. It cost $110,295 including a $1,595 destination fee. That’s $23,745 more than a Ram TRX, about the same price as a Ford Raptor R, and $23,295 more than a Rivian R1T. The Hummer matches up best with the Rivan, and the performance of all these vehicles is quite similar though the electric trucks would probably have a tougher time going 80-plus mph off-road with all their weight. The Hummer is a moonshot for EV technology, and none of those rivals have rear-wheel steering, 15.9 inches of ground clearance, or a Crab Walk feature. They’re also fast, but not as fast as the Hummer.

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

They have better interiors, though. While the Hummer EV boasts a glitzy 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and a 13.4-inch touchscreen running Unreal engine-based software and graphics for slick animations, the interior simply isn’t a $110k environment. The hard plastics feel out of place in this price range. The Rivian interior is a leap ahead of this GMC in terms of materials and fit and finish.

 

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

 

Pro: Hummer EV delivers usability

Want to change the volume in the Hummer EV? No problem, there’s a knob for that. Want to change the temperature or fan speed or lock the locking differentials? No problem, there are toggles for those controls. Want to use a turn signal in the Hummer EV? There’s a stalk for that. The Hummer EV may be a moonshot, but it retains key functionality with knobs, buttons, and toggles. Plus, it’s relatively easy to get into the high-set bed thanks to a multi-function tailgate with built-in fold-out step.

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

Con: Hummer EV glitches

The Hummer EV has a massive amount of software. The powertrain worked as advertised the entire week, but the rest of the vehicle didn’t at certain points. For about a five-hour period, the front trunk would release but not power itself up or down. I had to manually push or pull to open and close the massive hood. Then suddenly the frunk just started working as it should for an unexplained reason. The Hummer logo splashed across the screen as the system hung while loading various functions constantly throughout the week. At one point, the entire infotainment system crashed completely and rebooted. =

GMC Hummer EV

GMC Hummer EV

Hummer is back and it’s the same as it ever was: Completely gratuitous and over the top, horribly inefficient, and absolutely unnecessary.

And yet history repeats itself as the Hummer EV is so much fun due to its incredible capability and attention-grabbing design. Maybe this is the American way. You have to go over the top to get attention.

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2022 GMC Hummer EV Edition 1

Base price: $110,295 including $1,595 destination

Price as tested: $110,295

Powertrain: 1,000-hp three-motor powertrain, full-time four-wheel drive

EPA fuel economy: 329 miles of range (EPA-cycle according to GM)

The pros: Makes EVs cool, looks rad, can do unbelievable things, has T-tops, retains basic functions for usability.

The cons: Horribly inefficient, crazy expensive, feels cheap, glitchy, gratuitous in every way.



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