Hummer at the London motor show 2008

Published: 23 July 2008

If any stand at London’s Excel exhibition centre lays claim to being the least in tune with the zeitgeist, Hummer’s must be up there. GM’s military spec brand has only sold 128 cars in the UK so far this year, but it’s present and correct at the motor show.

What’s new on Hummer’s London motor show stand?

It’s been seen at US motor shows, but the HX concept is new to Blighty. It’s a smaller – mind you, these things are relative – entry-level version of the traditional monstrous Hummer, offering a modular body, a more fuel efficient (at least compared with the H2 and H3) V6 engine and traditional Hummer go-anywhere capability. Otherwise this corner of the Excel show that resembles an Iraqi war zone – aka the Hummer stand – features the familiar H2 and H3, the baddest SUVs on the planet.

CAR’s Hummer highlight

It’s got to be the HX, but don’t get too excited… The chances of this ever being built are slim now that General Motors may sell Hummer. There were rumours floating around Excel that some Russian zillionaire might buy the company. Which presumably means the US military would surely have to go back to Jeeps. Can’t imagine Uncle Sam buying cars from the descendants of Uncle Joe, after all.

What were they thinking?

It’s worth sitting inside the H2 and H3 production Hummers to realise how truly appalling – note the cheap trim and the lack of space – American ‘premium’ vehicles frequently are. That’s before you look at the 412 g/km CO2 emissions from the H2. No wonder GM, like Ford and Chrysler in America, are losing buyers faster than President Bush sheds popularity.

In a nutshell

This could be your last chance to see an All American dinosaur…

Click here to go to CAR’s London motor show A-Z homepage


CAR reader reports

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What surprised me most?

Where’s the long-wheelbase pink one used to shepherd hen-parties up the M61 to Blackpool? Leaving Britain’s most popular variant at home was a major faux-pas. Instead we had H3, H2, and H1 – the cars that double in size just like paper – oh, and a cut and shut little tot called the HX Concept, complete with rust coloured interior a la my 1983 Opel Manta. Nice.

Forget the PR spin : what’s the real story?

Compared unfavourably to George Bush they may be, but at a show where every maker had an environmental angle (some rather tenuous), it was strangely refreshing to meet a maker who claimed to be nothing they ain’t. We build big trucks we do. Of course they, like Bush, may be out by Christmas. And some would say good riddance to both.

Reader verdict?

Proof that the U.S. really is committed to the environment – all Hummers are made from 100% scrap metal. That chunky square shape, the random chrome and that tiny burrow to sit in in the middle. Well what did you think they did with the USS Nimitz?

Click here to go to CAR’s London motor show A-Z homepage