EV OMG: Eight cool things about the GMC Hummer

Posted by Talbot Payne on April 8, 2022

Phoenix — The GMC Hummer EV is a big kid’s toy.

The first electric vehicle on General Motors’ Ultium battery sled, it offered a huge canvas on which its team of engineers and designers could experiment with new technology. Its headliner features are well known. There’s Crabwalk mode, currently being showcased by celebrity basketball player LeBron James in national ads (and attracting celebrity buyers like actor Ashton Kutcher and chef Wolfgang Puck).

The 2022 GMC Hummer EV starts at $79,995, though the$112,595 First Edition model will only be offered in model year 2022.

All-wheel-steer enables tight turning radiuses to get you out of trouble off-road — or in a Meijer parking lot. And Watts-to-Freedom mode will accelerate you to 60 mph in just 3 seconds.

But there is so much more. Here are eight more cool things in the supertruck’s toy box:

The 2022 GMC Hummer EV features Easter Eggs like this dash footprint to signify GM's "moonshot."

1) Moonshot. Vehicle development programs usually take four years. The Hummer program launched in March 2019 with the impossible goal of delivering a supertruck by the end of 2021. That’s 2½ years. The production team called it GMC’s “moonshot.” To commemorate the feat, the Hummer EV is littered with moon references.

A map of the Sea of Tranquility, where Neil Armstrong first stepped on the moon from the Apollo 11 Lunar Module on July 20, 1969, is found in numerous places, including the instrument display, available hood graphic, floor mats and Bose stereo door speakers. Astronaut footprints litter the dashboard. And an American flag is planted just above the C-pillars.

Microscopic reflectors in the 2022 GMC Hummer EV's light bar reflect recessed LED lights to create the vehicle's signature running light.

2) Light show. Signature LED running lights are nothing new, but the way Hummer does them is. The pickup lights up the six, H-U-M-M-E-R blocks on the front facia with a thin, white film made up of microscopic lenses that reflect the illumination from recessed LED lights. “When we saw the technology, we thought we had to make use of it,” said chief exterior designer Brian Malczewski, whose resume includes some other cool exteriors like the Corvette.

3) Go topless. An off-road-focused vehicle, Hummer gets you closer to nature with four removable roof panels. Blessedly lightweight, they are easily extracted with rotating latches — then easily stored in the front eTrunk (or frunk, as EV owners like to say). The rear window can also be automatically rolled down. Unlike the Jeep Wrangler, however, the front windshield does not flop down — and neither can you take the doors off.

The 2022 GMC Hummer EV has three windshield wipers.

4) Tri-wiper. That upright front windshield offered challenges for wiper coverage given the truck’s narrow greenhouse and expansive width (measuring 87.6 inches wide, the pickup requires three amber roof lights, typical of heavy-duty trucks). So the Hummer is outfitted with three blades.

The 2022 GMC Hummer EV features 18 camera views including this one out back.

5) Cameras. Like the mansion you’ll store the Hummer in, the EV gets lots of camera angles to monitor things. Eighteen camera views allow you to keep an eye on everything from the ground ahead to the rocks beneath, to the tires on each side.

In Extract mode, the 2022 GMC Hummer EV can be jacked up 16 inches for extreme off-roading.

6) Jacked. Thanks to its air suspension, Hummer has 9.5 inches of variable ride height. From 10 inches of ground clearance in Normal mode, the beast can crouch to 6.5 inches off the turf for insane, Watts-to-Freedom launches. Or it can be jacked up 16 inches in Extract mode when the off-road terrain gets really sketchy.

To go 3 seconds zero-60 mph, the 2022 GMC Hummer EV must first be prepped in Watts to Freedom mode - indicated by the screen graphic.

7) Unreal. GMC hired New York-based Perception, famous for its design work in Marvel films like “Iron Man” and “Black Panther,” to pen Hummer’s user experience in the instrument and infotainment displays. Using Epic’s Unreal game engine — a familiar tool in the gaming world — Perception designed rich graphics like the intro sequences to Terrain and Watts-to-Freedom modes.

8) The sound of silence. Hummer is an electric vehicle, but chief engineer Al Oppenheiser and team were determined that it come with enhanced sonic emotion (this is a guy who built the blood-curdling Camaro V-8, after all). So GMC partnered with Bose to create Vehicle Sound Enhancement (EVSE). Using the truck’s 14-speaker sound system, EVSE sends subtle, custom-designed propulsion sounds into the cabin with each drive mode — and also hides undesirable motor sounds. Normal mode is quiet, but select Terrain mode while off-roading, for example, and you get a low, rumbling soundtrack.

EVSE is most pronounced with Watts-to-Freedom. Various audio cues fill the cabin, including a mix of electric guitar riffs while the Bose subwoofer creates vibrations to prepare occupants for launch.

“The sense of sound is an important element,” said Oppenheiser. “We looked to Bose for expertise in helping balance the appropriate level of acoustic precision with driver input, yet not compromising the enjoyment of a near-silent EV experience.”

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