Hummer is another one of General Motor’s zombie brands that will likely soon cease to exist (if no last minute buyer steps up). The builder of gas-guzzling SUV’s was thought to have been saved when Chinese construction company Sichuan Tengzhong, but the Chinese government squashed the deal. GM was preparing to wind down the brand, even as it entertained two other potential buyers.
But Hummer still has a little bit of life left in it, apparently. A large fleet order was placed for 849 Hummer H3 and H3T pickups. That is enough to put the Shreveport, Louisiana plant back to work for an extra month.
Could this be indicative of some life still remaining in the polarizing brand? Anything is possible; 849 vehicles isn’t exactly a light order, though towards what end they might be used, I haven’t a clue. GM is remaining mum on the name of the fleet buyer. But consider that GM sold just over 9,000 Hummers during the entirety of 2009, down from over 27,000 in 2008.
The Shreveport plant once employed over 3,000 people but now employs about 950. The plant had been marked for closure during the bankruptcy of GM no later than 2012, but with falling light truck sales and the failure to pawn off GM, the plant isn’t likely to last much longer. Neither is Hummer. Even with this huge order, it will keep the plant open an extra few weeks. But anything that keeps Americans employed, I am all for.
It would have been interesting to see GM try to save Hummer. America still lacks a tough, green truck, though GM already has its hands full. Could the Hummer name ever be saved? Or is it a brand too far damaged to ever be salvaged, just like that sock puppet from Pets.com?