Read The Race to Our Electric Future Part I, here.
It’s no secret that the market for electric cars is growing. Increasing gas prices and improvements in technology, along with a greater environmental awareness among consumers, has paved the way for companies to offer many electric car options. According to the Edison Electric Institute, there were more than 1.18 million electric cars on the road in the U.S. as of March, 2019. Additionally, total electric vehicle sales were up 81% in 2018, when compared to the previous year. So far Tesla has been dominating the competition in terms of electric car sales, but it is receiving increasing pressure from other manufacturers.
From the ashes, an unexpected contender has risen. Once highly criticized, and then ostracized, Hummer has officially made its return. Its appearance was temporarily delayed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, but now it has been officially revealed. And it appears that the brand has learned from its gas-guzzling mistakes. Yes, the new Hummer will be all electric. This means future Hummer owners will now be able to proudly drive their still giant trucks around without having to worry about people yelling obscenities at them.
Of course, some climate conscious friends could innocently mistake the new Hummer “supertruck” for its fossil-fuel powered ancestors. But, the next time a person rolls into the parking lot of Whole Foods and gets some disgusted looks by others or possibly even some verbal backlash for not being climate conscious, they’ll be able to confidently brush it off their shoulders and say, “No no, my friend this big beauty is electric…”
GM’s Hummer EV is slated to hit the streets in about a year. The automaker’s ambition with this release, besides making a pretty penny, is to create a “huge desire” for electric trucks. Additionally, GM is trying to position the new Hummer as a symbol of what’s achievable with electric vehicles. So, let’s take a look at the features of this giant shiny zombie. Classified as a sport utility truck, the electric Hummer will contain a GM-estimated battery range of 350 miles. Oh, and it will take a mere 10 minutes to get a charge worth roughly 100 miles. Not only will it be big, but it will also be powerful. The top of the line trim offering will contain 1,000 ponies (horsepower) under the hood. For comparison, Elon’s head-turning Cybertruck will reportedly push out 800 horsepower. And the Hummer will go 0-60 in approximately 3 seconds, right on par with the Cybertruck. GM is making it very clear that Hummer is coming back with a vengeance.
Back to its sport utility truck classification, the Hummer EV will possess the ability to drive diagonally with its crab walk feature. It will also have specially engineered tires, adjustable suspension, and underbody cameras to comfortably cruise through off-road terrain. Not bad Hummer. The price? The Hummer EV Edition 1 will start at $112,595, definitely not cheap, but it will have top of the line features.
Revolutionary trucks like the Hummer EV and Tesla’s Cybertruck will tap into new markets with their offerings, making electric vehicles enticing to consumers who prefer to drive trucks for their towing capacity, extra space, and general versatility. Next time truck fans go shopping for a new model, they might just end up choosing an electric-powered one.
Electric cars have come a long way, and they are quickly breaking stereotypes. For Hummer, it’s a great case study of an iconic brand reevaluating what its product, identity, and consumer base are all about, and relaunching with new features, new technology, and a new message. Five years ago, would we have imagined electric Hummers accelerating towards future-focused, environmentally friendly roads? Not at all. It’s a testament to changing times, evolving consumers, and new frontiers for product development.
The electric race is most certainly heating up, which is great news for consumers and the environment. For Tesla and Hummer, we’ll just have to wait and see whose super truck will win.