How GMC has survived as many years in its current format has often baffled me. It’s not that GMC builds terrible vehicles; it’s the fact that GMC builds, well, nothing at all. For years it’s taken Chevrolet models, dressed them up in fancy suits and shipped them out to be sold next a bunch of other rebadged GMs (AKA Buicks). That said, a report from the Wall Street Journal, via Auto Blog, states that this rebadging may soon stop, as GMC is feeling out dealer interest in selling a new SUV that will battle the legendary Jeep Wrangler.
According to the report, GMC has been speaking to dealerships and gauging their interest in possibly selling an SUV with “cues and capabilities” borrowed from the now-dead Hummer lineup. For those who don’t remember, the Hummer lineup was once a tried-and-true off-road wonder with the H1, but as the H2 and H3 rolled out, the ruggedness wore off and the brand fizzled. Depending on what direction GMC is looking to go with this potential SUV, this could either be a smashing success that harkens back to the days of the old-school, full-size Jimmy or it could result in a soft-roading flub that fails to matchup with the capabilities of the Wrangler.
I certainly hope that GMC knows better than to go with the latter, but the company has so little experience when it comes to true off-road SUVs that I am doubtful it can pull this off. Maybe brushing off the old H1 chassis and scaling it down to more of a Wrangler size is in the works, but for some reason I have a feeling that it’ll be closer to an H3 with a soft top if it does makes its way into dealers.
According to the WSJ, this project is under heavy consideration, as the publication quoted an unnamed source within GMC who said that the idea is “being kicked around real hard,” so we may very well see this SUV in one form or another. If it does make it to production, the question that pops into my mind is whether or not it would be shared with Chevy.