Hummer EV SUV public sale to learn Path Calmly’s outside mission

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Weighing nearly five tons, the 2024 battery-powered GMC Hummer SUV isn’t going to be taken lightly, but Tread Lightly will benefit.

Proceeds from this month’s Barrett Jackson auction of the first electric SUV will go to the Utah-based nonprofit dedicated to promoting responsible outdoor recreation through stewardship and education programs. The 2024 Hummer is the sport-utility version of the $110,000, 9,640-pound Hummer EV pickup supertruck that debuted in 2022.

VIN001 of the Hummer pickup raised $2.5 million at Barrett-Jackson, with proceeds going to the Tunnel to Towers Foundation, which helps injured veterans, first responders and the families of those who died in service. The SUV auction is also estimated to reach a seven-figure sum, with proceeds going toward maintaining trails across the country for ATVs from Hummers to Wranglers to Broncos.

“GMC is auctioning lot for VIN001 of the first model of 2024 in Scottsdale, Ariz. on January 28 at 6:30 p.m. Eastern Time,” said Matt Caldwell, executive director of Tread Lightly, in an interview. “Proceeds in part will go toward hiring new program managers as we expand our mission of restoring trails with boots on the ground.”

The Hummer is part of an off-road vehicle industry boom as manufacturers satisfy Americans’ lust for the great outdoors. With off-road oriented features like off-road tires, adjustable ride height, trail mapping, off-road tires and all-wheel steering, the electric Hummer SUV is a stealthy off-road beast. Tread Lightly’s mission is to help maintain and create paths for vehicles like the Hummer to drive around.

As motorized recreation booms, Tread Lightly’s budget has grown from $400,000 to over $4 million in the past two years. According to the US Bureau of Economic Analysis, the outdoor recreation economy accounted for 1.9% ($454 billion) of US GDP in 2021 — an 18.9% increase from the previous year

Tread Lightly is involved in trail maintenance nationwide, with 90 projects in 2022, including hotspots like Sedona and the Rubicon Trail. In Michigan, it was active in off-road parks like Holly Oaks and Drummond Island, where it helped secure the rock face in the busy area around the iconic Marble Head steps.

The VIN001 Super-Ute will be a premium, three-engine Edition 1 model for $105,595 with an estimated range of 300 miles and 830 horsepower. Like the standard model, which retails for $79,995, the Edition 1 is based on the same 800-volt Ultium battery platform as the Hummer pickup. The SUV has a nine-inch shorter wheelbase for better maneuverability. Despite its size, the Hummer SUV is capable of breakneck 3.5-second zero 60 runs to get passengers onto the trails in a hurry.

Visit the Barrett-Jackson auction page for more information on the auction. For more information about Tread Lightly, visit https://treadlightly.org/.

Henry Payne is an auto critic for The Detroit News. You can find him at [email protected] or on Twitter @HenryEPayne.