March 28, 2009

Hummer H1 Alpha

The Hummer H1 Alpha was a one-year production model of the regular H1 that featured a handful of important mechanical changes. A more powerful engine, another gear for the transmission and bigger brakes greatly improved performance over the non-Alpha H1 and made the beast the best it had ever been.

Unfortunately, the same shortcomings of piloting an H1 still applied. The massive dimensions still make maneuvering in city traffic -- not to mention parking -- a nightmare. The cabin remained about as luxurious as a postal truck, and with the tucked-up driveline components taking up valuable passenger space, the seats were still comically small.

This would be the last year of this big boy's toy. By this time, the entry fee into this overkill club was well over $100,000 and diesel was flirting with $3 per gallon. General Motors decided to send the H1 off into retirement and let the H2 and H3 models speak for the Hummer brand.

Most Recent Hummer H1 Alpha
The Hummer H1 Alpha was produced for just one year: 2006. Highlighting the mechanical upgrades over the previous H1 was a new 6.6-liter turbodiesel V8 that made considerably more power than the previous 6.5-liter unit -- 300 horsepower and 520 pound-feet of torque versus 205 hp and 440 lb-ft. A new five-speed automatic transmission was matched to that powerhouse, and the combination chopped nearly 3 seconds off the former 16.5-second 0-60-mph time. Thankfully, bigger brakes were fitted as well, for added stopping power.


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