Just as it did with the H2 4x4 back in 2003, world-renowned American go-anywhere brand Hummer is turning its biggest-selling model, the H3, into a pick-up truck. The H3T will join the firm’s larger H2 SUT flatbed in its product portfolio next week, when the covers come off it at the Chicago motor show.Structurally it’s identical to the H3 4x4 from the B-pillar forward; however from there aft the H3T has a slightly smaller rear cabin than an H3, a longer wheelbase, a 1.5-metre flatbed load area and multileaf rear suspension.Like the standard H3, the H3T is a proper five-seater thanks to the double-cab passenger quarters which grant rear-seat passengers only 30mm less legroom than they’d get in the standard car. It’s also got a folding rear bench, air conditioning and electric windows, so none of the usual truck equipment sacrifices apply here; a reversing camera, sat nav and Bluetooth connectivity are even options.
Longer than an H2: choice of I5 or V8 power
In order to provide room for that 1.5-metre flatbed, Hummer has stretched the H3 by 600mm to 5343mm overall, making it longer than a standard H2. It runs a ladder frame underbody with independent SLA torsion bar front suspension and multileaf Hotchkiss-type rear springs, and buyers can upgrade to a heavier duty offroad chassis pack, which includes locking front and rear differentials, if they choose.Engine options include Hummer’s standard 3.7-litre, 241bhp five-pot petrol and its compact, 5.3-litre, 300bhp V8. A choice of five-speed manual or four-speed automatic gearboxes will be offered on the lesser of those two engines; the V8 only comes with the four-speed auto’.The H3T will be built exclusively at GM’s assembly plant in Sheveport, Louisiana, beginning later this year. Although it will be sold in Europe in very limited numbers, GM will not offer right-hand drive models, so export to the UK by official channels is out of the question.Next year, however, the UK Hummer H3 range will be bolstered with the addition of a diesel model. Hummer is keeping mute on the particulars of its first oil-burner; at this stage, it won’t even say how many cylinders it will have. However, it has confirmed that the H3 diesel should hit the market before the end of the decade.