GMC Hummer EV Edition 1 is here

The GMC HUMMER EV is driven by next-generation EV propulsion technology that enables unprecedented off-road capability, extraordinary on-road performance and an immersive driving experience.

A few months ago we got the news that GMC was preparing to release an all-electric Hummer for 2021. Well, now it is here, in all of its glory.

With the release of the Edition 1, the Hummer EV is here to lead the EV revolution into off-road – ‘a first-of-its kind supertruck developed to forge new paths with zero emissions.’

With 1,000hp and 11,500lb ft powered by three electric motors in what GMC calls Ultium Drive. Battery cells come in the form of Ultium batteries, which are unique in the industry thanks to their large-format, pouch-style cells, that can be stacked vertically or horizontally inside the battery pack. The Hummer has two layers of cell modules providing a 24-module pack which gives over 350 miles of range. This battery tech also allows the batteries to be switched from parallel to series mode during charging, which makes HUMMER EV compatible with 350 kW DC fast chargers – where charging for 10 minutes will give nearly 100 miles of range.

Don’t think for a second that because the Hummer has gone electric, it can’t offroad. Al Oppenheiser, GMC HUMMER EV chief engineer said, “We had one goal for HUMMER EV: Build the most capable factory truck – ever. It’s an absolute off-road beast with a unique e4WD drive system that provides maneuverability unlike anything GM has ever offered before.”

The HUMMER EV’s driving experience can also be tailored by the driver for different conditions through Drive Mode Control. It includes four pre-configured modes: Normal, Tow/Haul, Off-Road and Terrain, along with the configurable My Mode — featuring a new Adrenaline Mode.

Each has specific chassis, suspension and propulsion characteristics, including the maximum torque delivered to the wheels; and along with the distinctive suspension and torque variables, the interior display screen graphics and colors, along with unique vehicle sounds, will be changeable with the different modes.

Two of the Hummer’s party tricks are Crabwalk and Extract mode – using the four-wheel steer to drive diagonally at low speeds helping it traverse tight trails whilst the latter allows the body of the Hummer to be raised 6 inches to offer extra height when tackling difficult terrain.

When off-roading, there is a strong want not to damage any panels, so Hummer has new front and rear underbody cameras with live “virtual spotter” views to help drivers navigate obstacles and place wheels on and off the trail. The underbody cameras are packaged to help protect against damage and equipped with a wash function to help clear debris.

The 2022 HUMMER EV Edition 1 will have a starting price of $112,595 with cheaper models due from Autumn 2022 to Spring 2024 ranging from $79,995 to $99,995.

TORSUS TERRASTORM: Go anywhere 4×4 minibus

Torsus, based in the Czech Republic is taking the off-road bus market by storm. Firstly with the beast of a bus called Praetorian that can carry up to 37 passengers practically anywhere you want it to go. Now the company has released a minibus variant – the Terrastorm.

Based on a VW Crafter/MAN TGE chassis, it is powered by a 177hp biturbo diesel engine with four-wheel drive and a locking rear differential. Thanks to upgraded suspension, it has an overall ground clearance of 290mm and a wading depth of 690mm, optional kit allowing up to 820mm wading depth.

It can carry between nine and 19 passengers depending on the configuration and each of the passenger seats can swivel 360-degrees and can be fitted with five-point harnesses. This allows for a highly configurable passenger cabin.

Highly configurable from launch, the Terrastorm is available as a minibus, medivac ambulance, cargo delivery van and others. Prices for the Terrastorm start from €57,461 and is offered in both left-hand and right-hand drive.

Ford brings back the Bronco

After 20 years, Ford is reviving the Bronco. Yes, you have read that right. Land Rover couldn’t have all the fun with the new Defender, the Bronco is returning as the flagship of a rugged 4×4 SUV family but remaining true to its original design. The designers went as far as having a life size digital scan of the original Bronco to influence the proportions and design of the new generation for maximum off-road capability.

Available in two-door and four-door guises – the latter a first for the Bronco, oh and a baby Bronco Sport. But we aren’t here for that. The proper off-roaders are fitted with either a 2.3-litre 4-cylinder EcoBoost with 270hp and 310 lb ft or a 2.7-litre EcoBoost V6 with 310hp and 400 lb ft mated to either a seven-speed (6+1) manual or a 10-speed automatic gearbox. The swish auto -box will make driving and off-roading a breeze but the manual with its crawler gear will be more engaging and fun to drive.

If there was any doubt that the Bronco was built to be off-road, the 35-inch tyres, the seven driver selectable modes (G.O.A.T. – Go over any type of Terrain modes) and the two 4×4 systems put it beyond doubt. Let’s talk about those two 4×4 systems for a second – the base system uses a two-speed electronic shift-on-the-fly transfer case, while the optional advanced system features a two-speed electromechanical transfer case that adds an auto mode for on-demand engagement to select between 2H and 4H.

The body is based on a fully boxed, high-strength steel chassis that delivers available best-in-class suspension travel. Each model comes with an independent front suspension for improved control, confidence and comfort. At the rear, a rugged solid axle design featuring coil springs with five locating links which can be upgraded to long travel position sensitive Bilstein dampers with end-stop control valves at every corner.

Inside, the Bronco is just as rugged. The instrument panel is inspired by the original and all the materials are tough and rugged with clear, visible gauges and a 12-inch Sync infotainment system that includes access to the FordPass performance app and OTA updates. This allows drivers to plan, navigate and share off-road adventures (it has over 1,000 maps with help from NeoTreks, Trails Offroad and FunTreks) as well as having a ‘spotter’ with the 360-degree camera.

The driver also has those G.O.A.T. modes – seven driver-selectable modes including Normal, Eco, Sport, Slippery and Sand, with Baja, Mud/Ruts and Rock Crawl for off-road driving. If you are a novice at off-roading, don’t worry Bronco has you covered with off-road mapping and technologies such as the Trail Toolbox that includes Trail Control (cruise control for low-speed trail driving), Trail Turn Assist (torque vectoring to tighten the off-road turning radius) and Trail One-Pedal Drive that helps drivers be more precise and feel confident whilst rock-crawling.

Ultimately off-roading is about being with nature, so the doors and the roof needs to come off. Bronco has got that sorted too; the doors are frameless making them easier to remove and two-door models come with a standard three-section roof system – left and right front sections and a rear section. Four- door models have four removable roof sections – left and right front panels, a full-width center panel and a rear section. Roof panels on all models can be removed by one person by unlocking the latches from the interior. First-row panels stow away onboard on two-door models.

Unfortunately the UK will not be getting the Bronco, in the same way it missed out on the F-150 Raptor. In the US, the Bronco starts at $29,995, including $1,495 destination and delivery and you can reserve one now for $100 now.