Hummer H2 2006 Review
Hummmmmmeeeerr. That's where.
Hummer, the civilian vehicle derived from the Humvee military, is one big look-at-me bad boy.
It's a vehicle that has been made famous by the Gulf War as much as California Governor Arnie Schwarzenegger, who has a collection of them.
As we found out on a H2 Hummer test day at Darlington Park Raceway, at the Gold Coast's northern tip, this is a big boy's toy.
In cult terms the Hummer is about as close as you get on four wheels to the iconic Harley. We put the vehicle through its paces, on track and off, with Corvette Queensland, that converts the vehicles to right-hand drive and also markets them in Queensland.
Three Gold Coasters have taken the plunge into the $142,000 vehicles. A luxury pack will set you back another $15,000.
Keep some spare change for the fuel, with the Vortec 6.0-litre, 237kW GM Gen 111 V8 rated about 20 litres/100km. That's because it is pushing around three tonne of vehicle.
It's unlikely the type of person buying a Hummer will take too much notice of fuel prices, so filling the tank for about $150 is unlikely to raise the blood pressure too much.
Big Arnie saw private buyer potential for the vehicle in 1992 and asked US authorities to sell him one.
Those who follow in Arnie's footsteps will get a vehicle that has just about the ultimate street cred. And, despite its size, it's not bad to drive.
Pushed around corners there's a fair bit of body roll and it takes a bit of pulling up.
The V8 is linked to a four-speed auto transmission with a shifter that resembles the power controller in aircraft.
It has a big cabin with bucket seats in the front, three seats in the second row and an optional single seat in the third row. The front seats have eight-way power adjustment.
Surprisingly, the H2 is easy to steer and is far from daunting. The turning circle is tight for this size vehicle at 13.5m and manoeuvring is simple, although you have to keep an eye on the vehicle's width, which is 2063mm, excluding mirrors.
People accustomed to driving a LandCruiser or Patrol would feel comfortable immediately.
While it may not be able to leap tall buildings in a single bound it certainly leaps, can wade through more than half a metre of water, can climb step-ups of 406mm, and easily hits 140km/h on the main straight at Darlington Park.
Off road it's a beast, but with some shortcomings. The sheer size means at times it's difficult to see the track immediately in front of the vehicle. Enginebraking for steep descents is, at best, less than average, even in low range locked in first gear. Ground clearance, entry and departure angles and ramp over are huge.
Both on and off the track the vehicle's trimming groans like a sailing ship in heavy weather. But there's something about the Hummer that leaves you wanting more...more time behind the wheel.