The mood at the Four Wheeler offices was somber on the day that our friends at Hummer came to reclaim (maybe "rescue" is more appropriate) their H2 SUT. After a calendar year together, it seemed that almost every staff member had formed a bond with Hummer's unique H2 SUV derivative.
During its tenure at Four Wheeler, the H2 wore a number of hats. It served as pack mule for the Four Wheeler TV crew as they filmed a segment on a U.S. Army battle tank; it flat-towed a newly Hemi'd Teal-J to Moab; and it appeared in several high-profile events, including our fascinating multiday 2005 Staff Trail Ride on the Mojave Road and our brutal California-to-Illinois H2our De Force thrashfest.
Like its first days (and everything in between), its last days with us were filled with interesting developments. During a mid-January blast from Four Wheeler's Illinois Midwest Bureau to Los Angeles, the H2 logged its lowest unladen mpg of the test (7.2) as its 6.0L V-8 engine strained against a sustained 30mph headwind on the 206 miles from Oklahoma City to Amarillo, Texas. Interestingly, though, the very next day the H2 logged its highest recorded mpg (15.3) as it traversed the 175 miles from Flagstaff, Arizona, to Needles, California.
Even though the H2 SUT is gone from our fleet, its positive impression lingers. It's not perfect (what vehicle is?), but we have a significant amount of respect for the H2 SUT. Yes, its styling is definitely flamboyant (think John Wayne, not Bobby Trendy), which may not appeal to all people. But exterior styling notwithstanding, after a year of brutal testing, the H2 SUT proved to us that it is one of the most capable and versatile fullsize SUVs out there.
Previous reports: Oct '05, Feb. '06, May '06
Base price: $52,205
Price as tested: $60,880
Four-wheel-drive system: Full-time electronic pushbutton two-speed
Miles to date: 29,255
Miles since last report: 2,992
Average mpg (this report): 10.8
Test Best tank (mpg): 15.3
Test Worst tank (mpg): 7.2
(unladen), 6.5 (towing)
No maintenance this reportTotal of one year scheduled maintenance: $173.59
Problem areas: None this report
Hot: Excellent approach/departure angles; Eaton electric rear locker; numerous beefy tow hooks; luxurious interior; smooth on- and off-highway ride; versatile 2nd-generation midgate.
Not: Dismal fuel mileage from the 6.0L engine that only generates adequate power in this vehicle; cheap-feel interior door panels; cacophony of interior squeaks; challenging visibility.
* "Squeak! Squeak! Still, a great vehicle if not a little skimpy on interior details. Going to miss the Big H!"
* "It would be a good thing if all fullsized rigs were this capable."
* "I have a huge amount of respect for the H2 after spending a year with it."