The new GMC HUMMER EV pickup and SUV are buybacks for the HUMMER H2s from a decade ago, but their inspiration goes much further back than that.
Chief Engineer Al Oppenheiser told Fox News Autos that when his team was commissioned on April 1, 2019 to design and construct an electric truck that was to go into production within two and a half years, approx. half of the time typically allocated, it drew inspiration from the Apollo program’s run to the moon.
“We really felt this bond to what the NASA team must have been through to develop something in such a short time,” Oppenheiser said.
General Motors was directly involved in the Apollo program and at the same time developed the Lunar Roving Vehicle with Boeing, which would become the first and still the only vehicle ever driven by a human on an extraterrestrial body.
EXCLUSIVE: WHAT IT IS LIKE TO DRIVE ON THE MOON
Like the three rovers that remain on the Moon’s surface and would be the ultimate “stable finds” if restored, the new LOBSTERS are of course electric, but slightly more able.
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While the rover’s four electric motors were rated at a quarter horsepower each, and its silver-zinc battery pack, which is good for an estimated range of 57 kilometers in low gravity environments, the HUMMERS Ultium electric platform is capable of delivering up to 1,000 hp and 350 miles drive on the ground.
To tie the two together, the HUMMER design team switched away from the military models of previous models and applied a lunar theme to the new trucks, which include topographic maps of tranquility on the cargo floor, door speakers and other stains along with recreations of Neil Armstrong’s footprints in the regolith.
The digital instrument cluster also displays a white moon pattern wallpaper during the day.
But could the new LOBSTERS actually work on the Moon?
“That’s a good question I would definitely love to try. Maybe Mars,” Oppenheiser said.