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Moab Electric Off-Road Adventure: 2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV Review

I tackled some quality Moab off-road in the 2024 Hummer EV SUV. I came away smiling from the experience, but not in love with the vehicle.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab(Photo/Bryon Dorr)
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What is it like to tackle proper off-road trails in the 2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV? I went to Moab to find out.

I spent a long day on the Jax Trax trail system about 30 minutes south of Moab in the three-motor (3L) Hummer EV SUV with Extreme Off-Road Package. This $116,000, 830-horsepower, 8,660-pound, all-wheel-steering, removable roof, 298 miles of range, battery-electric SUV came away unscathed.

Let’s dive into what I discovered along the way about this all-electric monster of an SUV.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV Review

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV 3L With Extreme Off-Road Package

Specs

  • Power 830 hp, 11,500 lb.-ft. (GM-estimated)
  • Range 298 miles
  • Weight 8,660 lbs.
  • Size 196.8" L (+ spare), 93.7" W
  • Wheelbase 126.7"
  • Angles 49.6 approach, 34.4 breakover, 49.0 departure
  • Ground clearance 10"-15.9"
  • Water fording 32"
  • Turning radius 35.4'
  • Suspension Air ride, offering 13" of wheel travel
  • Wheels tires 18" wheels and 35" M/T tires
  • Off-Road upgrades Front e-locker, rear virtual locker, five skid plates, rock sliders/side-steps, 2 underbody cameras w/washers
  • Towing 7,500 lbs.
  • MSRP $116,000 (as tested)

Pros

  • Open-air quiet off-roading
  • All-wheel-steering maneuverability
  • Loads of power
  • Massive ground clearance
  • Fits 37" tires with no modifications
  • Lots of interior space
  • Many useful camera angles

Cons

  • Poor visibility over high hood
  • Uncomfortable hard plastic across upper front seat cushions
  • Rear seats best for kids, not adults
  • Annoying pedestrian warning tone
  • Laggy infotainment

2024 Hummer EV SUV

Not a lot has changed since the GMC Hummer EV SUV hit the market in late 2022. Basically, it now comes in more colors than white, can be configured with the lower two-motor system (versus three-motor) and a smaller battery (16 versus 20), and the drive modes have been fine-tuned.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

The 2024 Hummer EV SUV I tested in Moab had the Extreme Off-Road package. It offers 35-inch mud-terrain tires wrapped on 18-inch wheels, a front e-locker, rear virtual locker, five skid plates, rock sliders, underbody cameras (17 in total, two cameras and four views over standard, underbody camera have washers), rear stabilizer bar delete, and gives you 7,500 pounds of towing capability.

Early development on the Hummer EV SUV started in 2020 with a lot of virtual validation and testing. In December 2020, the first test vehicle was completed, and only 27 days later, it was in Moab on the trails. Moab was a center for development of the electric SUV, on up to level seven-rated trails. The trails I tackled on this media drive — Jax Trax — are rated at a level five.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

Tire pressures matter when off-road, especially with a heavy vehicle. For this media drive, we drove on and off-road at 38 psi, which is 8 psi below the recommended street pressure. For difficult off-road terrain where more traction and/or float is needed, the GMC engineers said they run the tires down to about 28 psi on the Hummer EV SUV.

Maneuverability

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

The SUV is 9 inches shorter than the truck, which also improves off-road maneuverability. But the real key to this big SUV getting around off-road is the four-wheel-steering system. This system gets you a 35.4-foot turning radius and offers useful party tricks like CrabWalk mode.

GMC Hummer EV SUV
(Photo/GMC)

Also, if you don’t like the all-wheel-steer, just turn it off and drive it like a normal vehicle. I did this for about 20% of my testing, and I was surprised at how nimble the big SUV still was.

However, with the system on, the SUV is way more capable of getting around obstacles, but you do need to recalibrate your mind to the path the tires will take. Know that which driving mode you’re in will determine the ratio of rear steering to front steering, which will change the path of your tires and turning radius.

I think the rear-steer is an awesome party trick that has some real advantages off-road. But for sure, it isn’t needed for 99.9% of any type of driving.

Up & Over Most Obstacles

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

The air suspension on this SUV makes it super easy to get in and out of/load things while at the same time offering massive ground clearance (10-15.9 inches). The 2024 Hummer EV SUV has four ride-height settings: Access, Normal, Terrain, and Extract. On the trail, I only used the Extract ride height once, while using the Terrain ride height all the time.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
2024 Hummer EV SUV in Extract mode; (photo/Bryon Dorr)

Thirteen inches of suspension travel helps keep the wheels on the ground for optimal traction. The 2024 Hummer EV SUV is also rated to go through water up to 32 inches deep.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

Due to the 35-inch tires and air suspension combo, you also get extremely impressive approach and departure angles. The breakover angle (34.4 degrees) is also pretty good for such a long-wheelbase vehicle (126.7 inches).

We did put some serious dents in the rock sliders, but they did their job. Also put some solid scratches into the rear, lower A-arms, as they are the thing that hits in the rear of the vehicle before anything else and hang pretty low. They are super beefy, though.

As an added bonus, GM engineers confirmed for me that 37-inch tires will fit without modification.

Off-Road Driving Aids

GMC Hummer EV SUV
(Photo/GMC)

Driving modes are key to making this all-wheel-drive electric SUV work, especially off-road. These modes have been refined for 2024 model year vehicles, with some updates being applied through over-the-air-updates to older models.

For higher-speed off-road driving, you’ll want to put the vehicle in Off-Road drive mode. For more technical and slower terrain, you’ll want to select Terrain mode. It gives you the most aggressive rear steering, turns on an aggressive version of one-pedal drive mode, and is calibrated to limit wheel spin.

GMC Hummer EV SUV
(Photo/GMC)

For even more aggressive one-pedal braking in Terrain mode also select “L” instead of “D.” You basically have to drive the vehicle with your big toe in this mode, as the pressure control is very needed right at the top of the accelerator pedal stroke.

Once you get used to it, you can have the same amount of control as you would by an experienced left foot driver when tackling steep, technical off-road terrain. And, at any time, you can just left-foot brake the Hummer EV SUV. I prefer this technique, as it’s what I’m most comfortable with, through over a decade of experience.

Selectable lockers at both ends are also really helpful in this long wheelbase and heavy rig. The rear virtual locker can always be on as well, when off-road. It can work really well, as its basically an auto locker when used in this way and doesn’t have many downsides when slow-speed driving.

What I Like Inside

GMC Hummer EV SUV
(Photo/GMC)

While only a few vehicles on the market provide a truly open-to-the-environment off-road driving experience — think Bronco and Wrangler — the Hummer EV SUV is the only one that is fully electric — although you can drive the Wrangler Rubicon 4xe in full-electric mode. The Hummer’s roof panels come off easily and store neatly in the trunk.

The rear door glass also lowers at the touch of a button, which is great for airflow, ventilation for dog transport, and for carrying long items like surfboards.

GMC Hummer EV SUV
(Photo/GMC)

There is no shortage of space inside the Hummer EV SUV. This is especially true for front passengers, with loads of legroom, shoulder room, and headroom. The cargo capacity is also quite large at up to 196.8 cubic feet, which means it’s plenty big to car camp in and/or haul all sorts of outdoor adventure and camping gear.

GMC Hummer EV SUV
(Photo/GMC)

I really love the feel, look, and function of the textured piano key hard buttons on the center stack. It’s refreshing to have actual hard buttons in a modern vehicle, especially an EV.

I also really love the graphics on all the screens, especially the moving ones for each of the drive modes. The lunar theme within those graphics and carried throughout the vehicle is also quite fun.

Things Not to Like Driving the Hummer EV SUV

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

It’s impossible to overlook the sheer size (196.8″ L + spare, 93.7″ W) and weight (8,660 pounds) of this vehicle. It feels every bit as heavy as it is when in the driver’s seat.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
Trail camera sticks out of the skid plate under the 2024 Hummer EV SUV; (photo/Bryon Dorr)

You also really have to drive by the cameras quite a bit, as the visibility over the really tall and long hood is pretty rough. Luckily you get lots of useful cameras with the Hummer EV SUV.

Off-road that weight makes for some substantial body roll and pucker factor when you build up some momentum in technical terrain. It also makes finding traction difficult sometimes, and isn’t easy on the tires.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

There is no shortage of power on tap, but sometimes it’s hard to get that power to the wheels. In technical situations with low traction, the on-board computers work hard to limit wheel spin, which can sometimes mean you have your foot to the floor and nothing happens. That can be quite unnerving, especially if/when the vehicle finds traction without warning and takes off with authority.

While not a technique I use in anything but the slowest low traction situations, sawing back and forth with the steering wheel to find traction did work to get momentum on some steep, sandy climbs. This was the technique the on-site engineers recommended using in the Hummer EV SUV.

GMC Hummer EV SUV
(Photo/GMC)

The steering on all modern vehicles is vague, but it’s especially so on the Hummer EV SUV. It gets even more so under hard acceleration as the large weight of the vehicle shifts to the back wheels and the front wheels get light. With the massive power on tap this feeling can get unnerving quickly.

The brakes are also quite vague and not all that progressive. However, they are adequate in stopping the vehicle, which is super important with such a large and heavy machine.

What I Don’t Like Inside

GMC Hummer EV SUV
(Photo/GMC)

As I noted in my early review of the Hummer EV truck, which shares the same seats, the plastic trim on the upper back of the seats is a horrible idea. For me, with a long torso, that hard plastic is right across my lower shoulder blades and super-uncomfortable. That is especially an issue when bouncing around off-road.

While there are sun visors in this machine, they aren’t very good. They don’t extend enough and aren’t very useful when used on the side windows.

The infotainment system works fine and has many features, but it is a bit more laggy than it should be.

Rear-seat adult passengers won’t be loving life on road trips in the Hummer EV SUV. The minimal height of the floor compared to the top of the seat cushion means your knees will be high and little of your leg will be supported on the seat. Also, you’ll want to use the recline feature on the rear seats, as the crossbar in the roof goes right above your head when seated, limiting headroom.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

While not a big deal when off-road, there is much more road and wind noise than you might expect from an SUV with a six-figure price tag. The wind noise isn’t all that surprising, though, considering the massive vehicle size, very vertical windscreen, and thin removable roof panels. The windshield is also a bug collector because it’s so vertical.

Throughout the Hummer EV SUV, you’ll find little silhouettes of the front end of the vehicle. While these easter eggs are kinda fun, they are pretty cheesy when you consider they’re pretty much a direct copy of what Jeep does in its Wrangler and Gladiator models.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

Speaking of price tags, the off-road, three-motor, large-battery 2024 Hummer EV SUV I tested had a sticker price of $116,000. About $10K of that price tag is the Extreme Off-Road package, which you’ll want if you plan to go off-road. That’s a lot of money, but it’s also a lot of vehicle.

Hummer EV SUV Off-Road Review: Summary

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

From buying a street legal from the factory off-road capable rig, there might not be any more unique experience on the planet than the 2024 Hummer EV SUV. Offroading in an EV is unique in and of itself. No engine vibrations and no engine noises, but you do get lots of tire noise and an annoying pedestrian warning tone.

This is no desert runner. This is a slow-speed rock crawler. All-wheel-steering, tons of ground clearance, and selectable front and rear lockers let you know its intentions. The terrain mode setting is fully calibrated for such slow-speed and rocky adventures, and the “L” drive mode allows you to have very aggressive one-pedal braking for super-controlled and easy-to-manage off-road obstacle tackling.

If you buy a Hummer EV SUV, you’ll have to contend with poor visibility over the front hood, hard plastic across your shoulder blades, a slow-to-respond infotainment system, sun visors that aren’t up to the task at hand, and other little annoyances.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV off-road in Moab
(Photo/Bryon Dorr)

But, what you’ll get is a vehicle like no other that has a massive presence wherever it goes. It’s equally at home in the Hollywood Hills as it is on the trails in Moab, and you can’t argue with how fun and capable the 2024 Hummer EV SUV is.

One thing I get asked all the time about GM products is if they are built well, as they have gone through some periods where they weren’t built so well. From my experiences in the new Hummer EVs, I have found the fit and finish to be top-notch. These are press vehicles that I’ve been in, however, so I can’t comment on production units sitting on dealer lots.

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