It’s been over a decade since civilian Hummer H1’s stopped being produced and seven years since the Hummer brand was killed off altogether by General Motors. However, reports are coming out VLF Automotive is going to start producing a new variation of the iconic offroad vehicle. Only don’t plan to get one here in the states. VLF is producing them only to be shipped overseas, specifically to China. Massive offroad capable vehicles have become quite popular there over the past few years. In fact, just last year Ford announced they would be building and shipping the new Gen 2 Raptors to authorized Chinese dealers.
You might recognize VLF Automotive from their new sports car called the VLF Force 1, which is essentially a new and improved Dodge Viper. Which really shouldn’t come as a surprise considering VLF was founded by Bob Lutz, who’s responsible for creating the Viper in the first place. Lutz is what you would call a legend in the automotive industry due to an almost impeccable track record of creating some amazing vehicles. Also part of the VLF founding group is Henrik Fisker and Gilbert Villarreal. These three men are highly respected and almost anything that comes from that shop is special in one way or another. So it seems only fitting that they be the ones to revive the Hummer. Although technically they can’t refer to it as a “Hummer” because General Motors still owns the trademark on that name. Instead, they’re referring to it as the Humvee C-Series.
A civilian Hummer hasn’t been produced since 2006, but AM General has been building what they call the High Mobility Multi-Purpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV) for foreign military all over the world. In 2013, AM General started offering the kit version of the C-series to individuals that were willing to pay $60,000 for a vehicle that came with everything but a powertrain. That way, potential customers could use the powerplant of their choice. A group of five hardcore Humvee enthusiasts saw this as an opportunity and they created the company called Humvee Export. As their name suggests, they export Humvee’s to countries like Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. However, the main difference is that they would be exporting fully functioning Humvee’s, including the powertrain.
Apparently Humvee Export made a deal with Lutz and VLF where they would assemble the vehicles using GM powertrains to be sent across the pond. They look almost identical to what they did back in the late 90’s where you’d see them quite often, especially if you lived in California thanks to one of the most famous Hummer enthusiasts on the planet, Arnold Schwarzenegger. There is one cosmetic difference though. It has a front grill that protrudes out several inches more than it ever did in previous models, at least the civilian models. This new look of the front grill comes from the current military spec vehicles that are being produced.
The plan is to send roughly 100 completed turn-key models to China by the end of the year, all of which will have an estimated price tag around $150,000. Although that could go up drastically depending on what options and trim level you choose. Speaking of trim levels, there is estimated to be three different options, Bravo, Charlie, and Delta. No specifications were given explaining what the differences of each, but as with other small boutique manufacturers, VLF and Humvee Export are willing to add just abut any option under the sun if you’re willing and able to pay for it.
What we do know is a couple of the GM powerplants that’ll be made available for use in the Humvee C-series. The most common and popular option is the 6.5L turbo diesel V8 that’ll come with three different power output options. The entry level models will likely get the version with 190hp 385lb-ft of torque. The next level up is the 205hp 440lb-ft of torque and the most powerful diesel option is the one with 250hp and 440lb-ft of torque. That’s not really that much power considering the size and weight of the Humvee’s. But then again the most important aspect of the performance would be that low-end grunt, which diesels specialize in. However, if you’re a power junkie and always wants to have the most powerful option, they have you covered as well with the 6.2L LS3 gas powered V8 that’s good for 430hp and 424lb-ft of torque. Unfortunately for fans of the H1 Alpha, no word on the ultra powerful Duramax option coming anytime soon. But I have to assume it’s not far off either.
No specific pricing has been released for each given trim level, but it’s safe to assume well over $100,000 to start and will only go up from there. Nonetheless, it’s good to see the old Hummers back in action, even if it’s very unlikely that we will ever see a production version here in the states.