GMC Hummer EV SUV Review 2023 | Top Gear
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It shouldn’t make any sense. But drive it for a couple of days and you realise being sensible is for other vehicles. The Hummer is about fun

Good stuff

Crushing performance and ability on and off-road; 20inches shorter than the pickup

Bad stuff

Weight, cost, charging infrastructure, availability – it’s sold out for a while


What is it?

With Hummer relaunching itself last year as the new US EV superpower via the absurd but brilliant EV pickup, the focus since has been on this, the SUV variant. Some 20 inches shorter overall with a nine-inch shorter wheelbase, an inch or so less in height and a smaller 20-module battery pack, you might think that some of the pickup’s abilities have been watered down. But they haven’t really. The changes have expanded the platform’s capabilities, not shrunk them.

Looking like an outtake from Halo in its Moonshot Green Matte paint, the Edition 1 SUV features all the tech which debuted on the pickup – crab walk, WTF mode, Supercruise, etc – and adds a new level of off-road ability. While the pickup surprised us with its goat-like ability to scale improbably steep and rutted terrain, its rear overhang does limit its departure angle on more severe inclines.

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The SUV solves that by effectively lopping off the rear overhang and tucking the spare onto the rear door. It might not sound like much – until you get stuck. Not even the air suspension’s Extract mode, which lifts the body a full 15+ inches off the ground, is going to get you out of that. So the SUV, with its turning circle not much bigger than a Chevy Bolt’s, is the de facto choice of the Hummer range for off-roading.

Reinforcing that point, the SUV is available with an Extreme – naturally – Off-Road Package which includes 18-inch wheels and 35-inch off-road tyres, underbody armour and rock sliders, front e-lockers and rear virtual lockers plus an array of trail cameras and some heavy duty half shafts. With that lot in place, you are going to be able to get over anything you can’t go around, or through.

But hasn’t the SUV got less range than the pickup?

Over a standard test cycle, yes. The SUV’s 20-module battery has a max range of 300 miles compared with the 350 for the 24-module powered pickup. And the SUV can only charge at a max rate of 300kW compared with 350 for the pickup.

In the real world that’s not much more than one or maybe two WTF launches away from being about the same. But you also have to factor in the SUV weighs another 250lb+ over the 9000lb pickup. So, unless the SUV is significantly more aerodynamic, which it should be with an enclosed rear, range will be at more of a premium than on the open-bed pickup.

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Does being an SUV limit its carrying ability?

If you want to haul a massive quantity of bulky stuff, the pick-up’s 5ft-long bed is always going to win over the SUV’s 81.8cuft rear load area. That said, while there’s no room for a third row back there, the SUV is plenty big enough for five people and their luggage. If you need more than that, just tow it. The SUV can pull up to 7,500lb, so plenty for most people.

What's the verdict?

It shouldn’t make any sense. But drive it for a couple of days and you realise being sensible is for other vehicles. The Hummer is about fun

If you want the biggest, baddest SUV, the Hummer EV is pretty much your only choice right now. Having discarded all sensible limits to size, weight and performance – on and off-road – it shouldn’t make any sense. But drive it for a couple of days and you realise being sensible is for other vehicles. The Hummer is about fun.

Yet given the usual caveats – you’ll need easy and regular access to fast charging at home and away, it just won’t fit down narrow streets or into some parking garages – it’s also hugely functional, too. You’ll have a long wait to get one, even if you order one today for the thick end of $100k+. But it’s easy to see how easily it will surprise and hard to see how it would disappoint.

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