The GMC Hummer is a big and tough yet inefficient machine. Naturally, GM took a similar route with the massive new Hummer EV. And while I’ve talked plenty about its sheer size and weight, a recent teardown video on YouTube gives us a good look at its huge battery.
For those unaware, the GMC Hummer EV is one of the biggest and fastest trucks on the road, especially for electric vehicles. It weighs over 9,000 lbs, and the battery pack alone weighs as much as a small car like a Honda Civic. Even the original gas-guzzling model only clocked in around 4,900 lb. That’s a big difference.
Thanks to Munro Live on YouTube, who tore the $115,000 truck down into pieces, we’re getting an up close and personal look at what’s adding some of the extra weight. Obviously, it’s a big, new, modern vehicle with all the bells and whistles. However, the poor and inefficient design of the Ultium battery pack is a big part of the problem.
The entire 29-minute video is a great watch. It confirms many details we already know, like the Hummer EV’s 246 kWh battery pack, which gives the electric truck about 212 kWh of usable power. That class-leading battery easily tops the F-150 Lightning, which uses a 131 kWh cell, or the Rivian R1T coming in at 135 kWh.
The battery is already massive in its own right, but the teardown by Munro Live dug a bit deeper, and the results aren’t that great. For one, removing the heavy battery was a serious challenge, making repairs a complex and expensive task.
GMC is using tons of stamped steel for the battery enclosure, and steel is heavy. This is significant because almost every other automaker opts for aluminum to reduce weight and size. To make matters worse, inside that Hummer EV Ultium battery, the engineers found over 130 pieces of steel lumped together by over 3,600 weld spots, along with an inefficient and convoluted cell mounting and separator design.
Munro voiced concerns about the design, materials, manufacturing, weight, installation process, repairability, and more. Despite all that steel and thousands of welds, GM still recalled the Hummer EV battery over inadequate seals, which allowed water to leak into packs.
Remember that this is the first vehicle of its kind, and GM has likely improved a lot of the process for its upcoming Chevy Equinox EV, Blazer, or GMC Sierra electric truck. Either way, now we have a better idea of why the GMC Hummer EV is such a big, bad, and heavy beast.