The GMC Hummer EV is undoubtedly the most in-your-face and ostentatious production electric vehicle money can buy, and that propensity for excess also applies to its battery pack.
With a usable capacity of 205 kilowatt-hours, the Hummer EV's battery is the largest available on a production electric vehicle at the moment, with only the upcoming Ram 1500 REV set to overtake it with an optional battery pack of 229 kWh.
The GMC Hummer EV's battery pack alone tips the scales at 2,818 pounds (1,278 kilograms), which is absolutely mental since a compact passenger car like the Honda Civic weighs roughly the same – the whole car, that is.
If you're curious to learn why the Hummer EV's battery is so heavy, you might want to watch Munro Live's latest video, which takes a deep dive into how the massive pack is built. Engineers Antonio DiNunno and Julian Aytes draw several interesting conclusions that are not exactly flattering for General Motors.
Right off the bat, they reveal that removing the battery from the vehicle was a challenge in of itself given the pack's mass. The excessive weight is partially explained by the fact the entire construction of the battery pack is comprised of stamped steel.
Munro Live notes that most battery packs on the market today feature some level of aluminum in the enclosure, as well as some inclusion of either aluminum castings or extrusions – not the GMC Hummer EV, though.
The guys are astonished at the amount of manufacturing processes that go into making the Hummer EV's battery pack, noting that the main housing consists of 139 independent stamped components that are then laser projection welded together and spot welded together.
That's "quite a high component count," as they mildly put it, and it leads to the Hummer EV's battery pack requiring some 3,500 welds – almost double the amount of welds on a regular EV pack.
As they dissect the battery pack further, they find that GM has spent more money than it should have on other components and processes – such as the overly complicated cell separators.
An interesting thing about the battery is that it consists of two 400-volt battery packs packaged in parallel – one on top of the other – each with 12 battery modules. Obviously, the video goes into more detail, so it's clearly an interesting watch if you're into battery stuff or simply want to know what's inside an EV battery and why.
The video's conclusion is General Motors built a battery pack that's not only too heavy, it's also too complex – and therefore probably expensive – to produce.