Surely one of the most ubiquitous assumptions about the HUMMER brand is that they are largely inefficient vehicles. When compared to the new Chevy Volt that can run exclusively on electric, I would agree. But the difference is negligible when you compare the brand’s most popular model, the HUMMER H3, against other SUVs in its class.
Using the FuelEconomy.gov, I compared the H3 to some of its closest competitor’s in terms of annual fuel cost – since this is the cash you are truly out-of-pocket. I used $2.07 for regular fuel cost (the current national average), $2.27 for premium, and an estimate of 15,000 miles driven each year – the results are below.
Projected annual fuel costs:
2009 HUMMER H3 4WD: $1,941
2009 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4WD: $1,826
2009 Toyota 4Runner 4WD: $1,826
2009 Nissan Pathfinder 4WD: $2,432
So looking at these results, the only two vehicles that have less expensive annual fuel costs than the HUMMER H3 are the Jeep Grand Cherokee and the Toyota 4Runner – but only by $115 – less than $10 a month! The Nissan Pathfinder is significantly higher than the H3 because it requires premium fuel instead of regular, and also gets 14 mpg combined highway/city compared to the H3’s 16, Toyota’s 17, and Jeep’s 17.
When comparing vehicles, it’s important to look at other vehicles in the same class. It doesn’t make any sense to compare a two-door sedan with a capable 4WD with tons of cargo room. Soon, we’ll also take a look at off-road ability across the same line, and you’ll see how much more capability you get for a measly $115 extra in annual fuel costs.