Automotive history is littered with iconic cars that really make a statement, but there has never been a vehicle as imposing as the Hummer. This enormous 4x4 was originally designed for military use by AM General, but was pushed into civilian production by popular demand.
Sadly, today’s world isn’t very appreciative of a gas-guzzling tank, but the latest visitors to Jay Leno’s Garage might have a solution.
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Pollution and the environment are serious topics, but they do endanger some legendary vehicles such as the Hummer H1.
A new company called Mil-Spec have a workaround that keeps everyone happy. Leno is introduced to the Mil-Spec Hummer, a modified variant that is smog compliant thanks to the installation of a modern 6.6-liter GM diesel unit. It’s still very capable, producing 500-horsepower and 1000lb ft of torque.
Mil-Spec acquires a civilian Hummer, and then begin a process of stripping it down to the frame rails. Using this as their starting point, it then revises the suspension, fit new tires, and the modern powertrain.
Chris van Scyoc came up with the idea of ‘recycling’ the mighty Hummer, and with help from his friends that also graduated with an economics and car design degree, this trio of young entrepreneurs got to work. After some development work, production started about 12 months ago. A great trait of these trucks is that their new GM parts are commonplace, and regular service centres should be able to look after them without issue.
The Mil-Spec Hummer preserves the iconic heritage of this vehicle, while bringing into the modern age. The cabin is totally bespoke to Mil-Spec and can be had with diamond-stitched leather trim and other plush materials. Its layout has been totally redesigned from the original for better ergonomics and higher quality. Today’s buyers demand a lot of tech in their vehicles, and so this Hummer comes with GPS navigation, Bluetooth, touchscreen display, and a new sound system.
Jay takes one of these reimagined powdered-coated Hummers for a spin and is very impressed. The team spent a lot of time making their Hummer better to drive and a more refined experience than its original military design afforded. Jay said ‘I don’t feel intimidated driving it. I don’t feel like I’m crushing things on both sides without realizing. It’s very nice.’
We think it’s great that Mil-Spec have created these H1s and given the Hummer a place on today’s roads.
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