GMC Hummer EV’s chief engineer talks about engine torque, wheelies and Watts To Freedom


The Hummer EV becomes an electric off-road super truck with useful trail tools like Extract mode and Crab mode.

On the road or on a paved route, the star is something else: the WTF mode. This is Watts To Freedom and more than a party trick. It’s GMC’s Ludicrous Mode that aims to extract the most straightforward acceleration juice out of this Hummer.

GM has described Watts To Freedom as “a driver-selectable immersive experience that unlocks the full ability to accelerate,” from 3.0 seconds to 60 mph in the Hummer EV SUTor 3.5 seconds in the SUV.

2024 Hummer EV SUV - watts to freedom

2024 Hummer EV SUV – watts to freedom

How many times can you do this We asked GMC Hummer EV chief engineer Al Oppenheiser and got a simple answer: As often as you want, as long as there is enough battery available (at least 30% charge level) and the ambient and cell temperatures are below certain thresholds.

Ridiculous launch fashion theater

But wait, there’s more – the immersive part. Oppenheiser says that the WTF mode is the same for the passenger or passengers. Anyone who has ever seen the unforeseen passenger expressions on countless YouTube videos of Tesla’s launches in Ludicrous mode knows this.

“There’s a theatrical element that comes with it,” he said. “We compared it to your favorite roller coaster ride, which has some kind of set-up.”

Oppenheiser explained that GMC chose a Greek sequence that suggests you are on a rocket ship preparing for launch as it can take up to 15 seconds for the suspension to settle to the lowest point. / Has set exit mode. The screen gives you an arm signal and your aesthetic seat (usually a lane change alarm) vibrates during assembly, while the premium sound system from Bose plays a “very electric vehicle-like sound” as the volume increases.

“And so it’s kind of an experience of what Watts to Freedom really means,” he said. “It’s all the fuss for the people in the vehicle.”

Um, the Evolution Hummer EV can pop a wheelie?

GM raised its eyebrows and spoke of 11,500 pound-feet of torque measured at the wheels after torque multipliers. That seems like a crazy character and it is, but the real character is still crazy. According to Oppenheiser, the engine torque is about 1,100 lb-ft. The two rear motors have a reduction ratio of approximately 10.5: 1, the front motor 13: 1.

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV

2024 GMC Hummer EV SUV

Oppenheiser said that his team has been gradually Working on maximum torque while testing the performance of the Hummer EV. One of the challenges in calibrating all of the systems in the vehicle was getting the chassis and suspension controls to respond quickly enough to the sudden transfer of torque from the electric motors.

“Our landing gear control team is working to keep up with how quickly the power can shift from the front engine to the rear … I’m just saying it hasn’t caught up yet,” he noted. Then he dropped a surprise: “And if you can get the front tires off the ground in a heavy-duty truck, that’s a high-performance vehicle right there … it’s a super truck; We don’t worry. “

Buyers can experience the supertruck performance of the GMC Hummer EV when the Edition 1 version of the pickup hits stores later this year. Further models will follow in 2023.

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