Half of General Motors’ GMC-Buick dealers have signed up to carry the GMC Hummer BEV under the terms of an agreement with the automaker.
GM President Mark Reuss says the company’s aim in Hummer marketing is to provide the best possible experience for customers.
The agreement with dealers allows GM to take the initial $100 reservation fee for the Hummer. “Dealers also have to agree to get the tools necessary to service the vehicles and put in charging stations,” says Reuss. “There also is going to be training.”
In some locations, the dealer might not be able to sign up because the local electric grid cannot handle the demands from the fast chargers needed to service the battery-electric Hummer pickup, Reuss says.
GM is asking dealers to adhere to a no-haggle pricing strategy that ensures there is only one Hummer price across the internet, Reuss says, adding final plans for distribution won’t be completely final until early next year.
The 2022-model-year Hummer goes into production in the fall of 2021 with the top-of-the-line Edition 1 model costing $112,595. Reservations for the Edition 1 are full, GMC says. It will be followed by less-costly models with less horsepower, range and torque.
“Manufacturing this is going to lead to all the learnings on how to do this at scale,” says Reuss. Building a pickup truck on the Ultium platform designed for BEVs is quite different than building the traditional body-on-frame pickups in which GM has specialized for decades, he notes.
GM plans to build battery-electric pickups “with a different package” for the Chevrolet and GMC model lines, Reuss says during a roundtable discussion with analysts and journalists. “Frankly, it then trickles down into midsize trucks such as the Colorado and Canyon.”
Reuss (pictured below) says GM is following the same strategy with its electric crossover/passenger car platforms.
GM is spending $2 billion to renovate its assembly plant in Spring Hill, TN, so it can build the Cadillac Lyriq BEV, which is positioned at the high end of market. Due out in 2022, the Lyriq is only the first of multiple electric vehicles that will come out of the plant, GM says.
The automaker is preparing Factory Zero, the company’s new name for the Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant, to build both the Hummer and a Cruise Origin shuttle from the automaker’s autonomous-vehicle subsidiary.
The Cruise Origin, which was designed to carry multiple passengers but is being updated as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, will feature virtually invisible barriers between passengers as well as a station for hand sanitizer to help make riding in an AV more attractive, according to Robert Grant, Cruise vice president-public affairs.
“The Origin was designed specifically to improve our health — the health of our cities and our planet. Along with our partners at General Motors and Honda, we purpose-built the Origin to completely rethink the role of the car, which for over a hundred years has been causing some of our worst and most stubborn problems, none of which are getting any less urgent during the time of COVID. In fact, some of them are getting worse,” Grant says.
Grant says the Origin does not have driver controls like those found in a traditional car, and in the coming months GM and Cruise will petition the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration seeking regulatory approval for its deployment on the road.