What the Hell Were They Thinking: Hummer H3

Call it a case of greediness on old GM's part.

After the solid success of the Hummer H2, GM wanted to further capitalize on a vehicle segment that few really needed and even fewer actually utilized. Yes, the H2 was a proper off-road, full-size SUV that had somewhat of a purpose. But the H3, well, that’s a different story. Launched in 2005, it was based on the previous generation Chevrolet Colorado and it even came powered by that puny 3.5-liter straight-five cylinder. It produced only 220 horsepower and 225 lb-ft of torque – not all that spectacular for an SUV that weighed in at nearly 5,000 lbs.

Call the H3 a Colorado in a Hummer costume, if you will. OK, yes, GM later enlarged the engine to 3.7 liters and eventually offered a V8 option, but by that time Americans had begun to turn on SUVs in favor of crossovers. Above all, off-road enthusiasts were fully aware of the H3’s bullshit; they didn’t care that it had full-time all-wheel-drive or that a pickup variant was launched. The H3 was nothing more than a light pickup underneath, and for those who wanted an in-your-face Hummer, the H2 was by far the better choice. But regardless of all that, the Hummer brand was killed off entirely because of the economic meltdown. While some still (justifiably) miss the H2, the H3 is best forgotten entirely.

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