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I will be surprised if it does not have 3 rows of seating. Following Rivian's lead, it might also have less battery capacity in the biggest battery model. I hope not, but it may need to make room to store the 3rd row when folded flat.
 

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Wow, the SUV looks great. I am surprised they made it smaller, but I think it makes sense. I think the size of the SUT will make it difficult to fit into a one car garage, so maybe they figured the typical buyer of the SUV would want something smaller. It is disappointing there is no 3rd row seating, because so many will cross it off their list. I have been following Rivian closely for more than a year, and it appears their marketing research determined three row seating that can fold flat was more important than range. They are probably right. I rarely need a third row, maybe once or twice a year. It is really nice to have it when you need it. But still - range in a BEV is king, and I personally would rather have range than that 3rd row.

 

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I agree with most of what you are saying, but on Range vs 3rd row. iIf you make a vehicle longer typically there is no aerodynamic penalty, so it just adds a small amount of mass, which effects real world range less. Also if you make a vehicle longer you can fit more batteries similar to Hummer SUV which has 20 battery cell modules over the SUT which has 24 modules. SUT bigger battery = more range. GM made a design decision to make the Hummer SUV shorter for whatever reason (I think a mistake when you understand the customer base that will buy and can afford this) The lack of a 3rd row led me and quite a few others to instantly cross the Hummer SUV off our shopping list. Also the schedule, 2 years out? Why are they showing it now? GM is starting to play Tesla's game now of showing vehicles that are too far out, and I am not impressed.
With the SUV it appears GM is going after the Bronco and Jeep Wrangler "two row seat" market, instead of the Tahoe or Suburban "three row seat" market. I bet they will produce an electric Suburban at some point, but they have nothing that competes with the Wrangler - until now. So they are entering that market segment with a BEV, instead of an ICE vehicle like Ford is doing. I think it is very smart of them.

I kind of like a lot of information early, as long as they don't follow the Tesla process of promising something that never comes - or comes much later than promised.

The range factor is significant. It would have been wise IMO to squeeze the biggest battery into the SUV, but then it would have to be longer (as you said). And while I agree that a third row is a minimal impact on range from a weight perspective, if you want the third row to fold flat, there might not be room over the battery to make it work. Rivian had to take out some of the battery to get the third row to fold flat. They originally planned to offer the longest range SUV as a two row model only, but I saw a lot of complaints on the forums about that. So now Rivian's longest range SUV will have a smaller battery than the truck, and a third row of seats. People are complaining about that also, but not as much. At least from what I can tell.

So I think GM has the same issue - either reduce the battery to 16 cells (for example) to make room for the third row, or don't put in a third row. Since they appear to be building a Wrangler competitor, the third row is not really needed anyway, so the decision is easy.
 

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I agree with most of that. GM clearly went one direction, but I think missed the mark for the families I know that would be interested. We are a small sample size, and I may be wrong, but at the price (slightly higher than the SUT per like spec, I think they missed the mark) Yes, there is a big Caddy EV in process sometime in the future, and it will have a foldable 3 row. If you look at 2021 Yukon the 3rd row folds flat on top of the interior floor, not below into the frame rails, and the rear cargo floor is higher to clear the rear suspension (so battery length will not matter effect foldability of the 3rd row, what does affect it is wheelbase, the third row has to set in the upright position over the rear axle and then fold down and forward into the 3rd row foot space to stow).

Good points. I also question the need to fold flat vs. removable third row seats. In my use case, I would rather have the ability to remove the seats if I needed a truly flat interior, and folding but not flat would be OK with me. However, most people probably would never want to remove the seats and they would get a lots of complaints about a space that is not flat. Assuming a shorter wheelbase instead of a longer one, because as you pointed out a longer wheelbase could fold flat without interfering with the battery. A taller vehicle would help as well, I think. The rear of the SUV seems to taper down some, which reduces room for heads. On the other hand, it looks great the way they designed it.
 

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That is a good shot to show how little room is behind the second row.
I wonder if that angle makes the space look smaller than it really is. This view makes it look like there is plenty of room for a third row of seats. There would not be much space behind the third row, but that would be fine for most people I think.

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It's the floor space that will be a problem for the 3 row, to make 3 rows work the wheelbase has to be extended. That floor is right on top of some of the suspension components No way to hollow out for footwells with this short wheelbase.
That is reasonable, but I would argue that a wheelbase of that dimension is enough to squeeze three rows of seats in. One of the videos I watched said the Hummer SUV wheelbase is a little bit longer than the Tahoe. If the Tahoe can have three rows, why not the Hummer SUV? Maybe it does go back to the battery size, but still, creative design I bet could fit another row in. I copied this from a Rivian forum: wheelbase: R1S 121'' Hummer SUV 127'' . The Rivian R1S has three rows of seats. Why do we think the longer wheelbase Hummer cannot, when the Rivian R1S has a shorter wheelbase?

On a side note, some Tesla Model S sedans have rear facing third row seats. And the Hummer cannot even do that? Maybe rear facing seats is a bad idea, but still. It can be done I think.

The three row seat thing is a big deal. Not for me, but for many others. It seems the Hummer designers should consider how to fit another row in, because I think they will get a higher sales volume if they are successful.
 
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