idyourride
idyourride
Location: Bend, OR, USA
Joined: 08/20/2013
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The Tale of the Last Hummer

September 18, 2013
The Tale of the Last Hummer

Not many in the automotive world have had the privilege to see GM's last attempt to save the Hummer brand..the Eco-Hummer.  It was conceived during a time of high gas prices and government demand for auto manufacturers to increase their CAFE ratings.  The public was moving away from large SUV's and trucks, toward smaller more fuel efficient vehicles.  This joint venture between GM and Toyota, whose internal name was the Hum-Bee, was created to fill the need for a small fuel efficient Hummer.  GM saw this as the perfect vehicle to build the Hummer brand overseas, an American icon scaled down for Europe and Asia roads.  This would be both GM and Toyota's plan to keep their joint Northern California Nummi plant open.  Possible production names included Eco-Hummer, Bummer, Scummer, and of course, the H4.  Unfortunately, the Eco-Hummer never saw production.  The weight of the add-ons to rebrand the Scion XB significantly downgraded the EPA fuel rating, doing little to help the dismal CAFE ratings of the Hummer brand.  The lifted suspension brought serious concerns from the NHTSA about rollover safety (remember the Ford Bronco 2). The economic downturn and following collapse of the auto industry sealed its fate.  Certainly, this little hummer was made for the man who doesn't have the need to compensate for other short comings and the soccer mom whose middle finger is all she needs to navigate the grocery store parking lot. This gem of automotive history has been spotted occasionally roaming the Oregon country side.  No doubt, a former auto engineer must have saved it from the crusher.


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jenljl
November 11, 2015 10:25
This article is cracking up my entire family and our friends.

This is my dad's car. My family passes it around to whoever needs to use it for a variety of reasons, including: my car is in the shop, picking up stuff at IKEA, taking trash to the dump, taking some friends to the movies, etc.

The Truth: this is a Scion. A number of years ago we thought it would be a great spoof to convert it into an "EcoHummer" because anything we did to it would still leave it with better gas mileage than an actual Hummer. We used Hummer parts and had a logo and custom bumper made. If you look at the steering wheel, it still says "Scion." No, we weren't bored out of our minds with no life when we did it. We did it because it's satisfying to manifest something ridiculous. It's turned into one of those things that people see and either love or hate. There are so many amusing stories that have resulted from driving this thing around. We also enjoy seeing "The Mystery Machine" that is based (I think) in Washington State. Many people don't get the EcoHummer joke and complain bitterly about anyone who would drive a Hummer -- even an EcoHummer. (Most notably when we had it parked out at the Oregon Country Fair.) ...sigh...

If this photo was taken in Bend, it was likely when my dad and mom drove it out there to pick up my brother after he summited the Three Sisters in one day and he couldn't face the drive home to Eugene afterward. We've had it for so long that we forget that it is still a novelty to most people. I just call it our circus-mobile.

So, there's the story of this car, and why it was in Bend, OR. :-)