4 Gas-Burning Vehicles That Are More Efficient Than the GMC Hummer EV

The Hummer EV is an exceptional technology showpiece, but efficiency isn’t its forte.

2022 GMC Hummer EVGMC

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In 2010, in the aftermath of declaring bankruptcy, General Motors axed the Hummer brand. No one shed a tear. Its short existence lasted from 1992, right after military Humvees helped U.S. soldiers deliver a swift victory over Saddam Hussein in the Gulf war, to the late days of the Iraq War, which dragged on for eight years and brought us images of firebombed Humvees that had failed to protect troops. The civilian truck's life at home mirrored this rise and decline, moving from a beloved celebrity status symbol to an outdated, gas-guzzler.

Now Hummer is back but as a nameplate under GMC instead of its own brand. And while the in-your-face design theme is largely the same, the powertrain couldn’t be more different. GMC’s Hummer is an electric truck, and it’s the largest, heaviest, and most inefficient electric vehicle (EV) by a wide margin. It checks in at more than 9,000 lbs, with a battery that weighs as much as a Toyota Corolla. And it sucks down electrons at 47 MPGe combined. That's good among large gasoline and diesel pickups, but when other full-size electric trucks like the Ford F-150 Lightning and Rivian R1T are nearly 50% more efficient than that, something's off.

Yes, the 2022 GMC Hummer EV can move like a crab and accelerate to 60 mph in approximately three seconds. And yes, it will serve as a test bed for GM's battery technology that will ultimately power more efficient electric cars. But based on energy consumption, it's an utterly silly thing, just like the original. To give you a sense of just how inefficient this truck is, check out this list of a few gas-powered hybrids that beat it in fuel economy for a fraction of the cost (and weight). Note that this list is hardly exhaustive. Many other vehicles beat the Hummer in fuel economy, but the vehicles we’re highlighting illustrate the variety of vehicle shapes and sizes that can beat the Hummer’s efficiency without making the switch to full electric power. And MPGe—the battery equivalent of a gallon of gas—applies only to vehicles with fully charged batteries and does not take into account each vehicle's carbon footprint, since fuels (including electricity) are only as clean as their sources.

2022 Jeep Wrangler 4xeJeep

2022 Jeep Wrangler 4xe – 49 MPGe

This plug-in-hybrid Jeep is a tiny ballerina to the Hummer's Hulk. Yet, despite the size difference, the Wrangler is among the Hummer's main competitors due to its off-road chops and electrified powertrain. It beats the GMC in fuel economy, with a combined rating of 49 MPGe, and it's better on the trails because of its narrower dimensions and lighter weight. The Hummer (narrowly) wins on maximum approach, departure, and break-over angles, but for maneuvering in tight spaces, the 4xe Jeep—which is two feet shorter than the GMC—has a major advantage.


2022 Toyota RAV4 Prime – 94 MPGe

A RAV4 can't touch a Wrangler or Hummer in off-road prowess, but the plug-in-hybrid Prime dominates both vehicles in fuel economy, with a 94-MPGe rating and 42 miles of EV range. With a depleted battery, the Prime still hits 38 mpg.

BMW X5 xDrive45eBMW

2022 BMW X5 xDrive45e – 50 MPGe

On the luxury front, the Hummer competes against several vehicles, including the plug-in Range Rover Sport, but that model falls short of the GMC in MPGe. The best premium alternative to surpass the Hummer in fuel economy, then, is perhaps the plug-in-hybrid X5, which boasts an EPA combined rating of 50 MPGe. Given the BMW outclasses most mid-size SUVs in handling and roadholding, it should have no problem beating the behemoth Hummer in on-road composure.

2022 Toyota Corolla HybridToyota

2022 Toyota Corolla Hybrid – 52 mpg

The Hummer’s battery pack weighs a whopping 2923 lbs, which, as we mentioned earlier, is heavier than an entire Toyota Corolla. In fact, the heft of three Corolla Hybrids doesn’t match that of one Hummer EV. So it should come as no surprise that GMC performs worse on the EPA’s combined cycle than this Toyota, which achieves 52 mpg without ever plugging into an outlet. Plus, for the $110,295 starting price of the Hummer Edition 1, you could buy four of these hybrids.

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Clifford Atiyeh
Clifford Atiyeh is an independent writer, photographer, and creative consultant. He has reported for dozens of websites, magazines, and newspapers in his 20-year journalism career, during which he has tested more than 650 new vehicles. His automotive expertise focuses on product development, market analysis, and the litigation and legislation affecting the industry. Clifford is vice president of the New England Motor Press Association and runs a marketing consultancy.