In our 5th and final Q&A segment with HUMMER’s CEO Jim Taylor, he addresses the brand’s offroad capabilities, dealer and owner events like HUMMER Happenings, as well as a couple wildcard issues like OnStar and H3T Accessories. Many thanks to Jim, who took the time to answer so many questions for this week-long feature – Enjoy!
Questions & Responses
Name: Tom Patterson – Allen, TX
Question: What is Hummer going to do to improve its offroad image as well as implementation of features that will improve its offroad capabilities, offroad reliability, and aftermarket product support?
Jim: No doubt that there are people who have perceptions about HUMMER vehicles and their capabilities. However, they are misinformed. The H3 Alpha was Four Wheeler Magazine’s 2008 Four Wheeler of the Year and the H3T Alpha was Four Wheeler’s 2009 Pickup Truck of the Year. We continue to demonstrate the rugged capability of HUMMER vehicles through our stock class racing program, which has been on the podium in the stock class for nine consecutive years at the Baja 1000. You can read more about our recent wins at the 2009 Baja 1000 at www.hummer.com
Our future advertising, marketing and promotions will promote the capability of our vehicles, and how that capability enables you to better, and more responsibly enjoy our planet. With features like a standard 2-speed transfer case, outstanding approach and departure angles, available locking differentials, and standard underbody shielding, we continue build some of the most capable vehicles from the factory today.
Most recently, we developed the Moab H3 Concept and H3T Sportsman Concept for the 2009 SEMA Show. Both vehicles were very well received and we were approached by a number of leading aftermarket component makers interested in developing products for HUMMER vehicles.
Capability will continue to be the cornerstone for our vehicles and we will continue to find new and innovative ways to improve that capability, whether it is through current models, new models or after market support.
Name: David McMahan SoCal
Question: Jim I have wondered for years when Hummer would offer something similar to the “Trail or Offroad ready” option package. I can’t tell you how pleased I am that Hummer will be coming out with these packages. When will customers be able to order trucks with these options? Hopefully the new H4 has them available as well.
Jim: HUMMER currently offers one of the most comprehensive off-road packages available on every model we produce. The H3/H3T Adventure package includes the largest tire available from the manufacturer on any midsize truck or SUV; a 4:1 2-speed transfer case that provides extremely low crawl ratios from the factory; and the only front- and rear-locker available on a midsize truck or SUV. Every H2 features a standard rear locking differential, two-speed transfer case, underbody shielding, and rocker protection. The H2 Adventure package also features a built-in air compressor and self-leveling air suspension.
Off-road capability is a cornerstone of the brand’s DNA and we’ll continue to engineer this type of capability from the factory in every model we produce.
Name: Mike Magliaro, New Hampshire
Question: HI Jim,
I love my H2 and cant image driving anything else. Our family loved the “Hummer Happenings” that were put on by the dealership. We got a chance to meet other Hummer owners and explore what our vehicles are made to do. Even the outings that weren’t off road we enjoyed the company of others that enjoyed having something unique and different. It’s a real cult, enthusiast group. Will the new ownership offer similar opportunities and revitalize these events?
Jim: I have received similar messages from other HUMMER owners and dealers. We are currently evaluating the opportunities to revive HUMMER Happenings and HUMMER support for owner events. Our enthusiastic owners are what differentiate us from every other vanilla SUV on the market and we intend to continue to encourage and support owner events and activities in the future.
Name: Mikkel, Laguna Beach
Question: What are your thoughts on Hummer’s community involvement in the future? For example, Hummer sponsored off-road trails and trail maintenance events? Do you see a future for the HOPE program?
Jim: As a niche brand, HUMMER will devote more attention in the future to community events, including owner events, trail access and maintenance programs and groups like HOPE or HERT. These are extremely important in fostering the HUMMER community; demonstrating the vehicle capabilities; and improving the brand image.
Name: Scott Howell East Hampton, CT
Question: Mr. Taylor,
Thanks again for taking the time to answer some more questions.
Will Onstar be available on future Hummer vehicles or will that relationship end when the sale is complete?
East Hampton, CT
Jim: OnStar is available in the 2010 model year vehicles and we will continue to evaluate OnStar and other available telematic systems for future models.
Name: Bill – Missouri
Question: When will Hummer start stocking and selling more of the accessories for the H3T? Specifically the bed accessories (wheel chock) and rocker panel rails.
Jim: While a number of the H3T accessories went into production, there were a few that did not when the brand was put under strategic review, including the wheel chock and rocker protection. Our engineering team is currently working to develop or find suppliers for these and other accessories to provide HUMMER owners with an extensive portfolio of accessory options to enhance the functionality and capability of HUMMER vehicles.