The words ‘green’ and ‘Hummer’ don’t usually occur together, except when compiling a complete list of oxymorons. But earlier today at the Saab/Hummer press conference, GM debuted it’s concept H-X Hummer, calling it the “Green Hummer”. The new model is smaller, lighter, and intended for a younger demographic, with the added capability of running on E85 ethanol. It also has an interesting modular construction that allows you to reconfigure the cab at will. Martin Walsh, General Manager of the brand, told us that the new model could get mileage in the mid-20s (although no hard numbers were available).
Ok, this isn’t exactly the 60 mpg Hummer I’ve mentioned before, but that’s a 10 mpg increase in efficiency over previous models. To be honest, it also looks a lot less like a Hummer, being smaller and sportier-more like a lunar explorer than the H2 (that’s my take). But Mr. Walsh said Hummers will continue to decrease in size as customers demand greater fuel efficiency and continue to voice environmental concerns.
Which brings up an important point: as much as we might want to pin the blame on auto manufacturers for producing large, wasteful vehicles in America, it really comes down to consumer demand. Thankfully, people are starting to ask for fuel efficiency, and getting folks into an E85 H-X (see earlier post on the ethanol announcement below) is surely better than defaulting to a 14 mpg H2.
GM also spoke of plans to release diesel model Hummers abroad in 2009, but was unclear (or it was a maybe) on plans for the U.S. market.
Photo Credit: General Motors