Hummer – what lays ahead?
The uncertainty around HUMMERs future is likely to end soon as the sale of the brand to its new owners, China’s Sichuan Tengzhong, nears completion.
Hummer’s CEO Jim Taylor is reported to be working hard at chalking out a recovery strategy for the company, which would be implemented as soon as Tengzhong gains control.
Taylor reportedly wants to up sales by increasing marketing spend in 2010 and developing a smaller SUV based on the HX Concept, as seen at the 2008 Detroit Auto Show. This new SUV will be christened the H4 and aimed at customers that want a Hummer smaller than the H3, and which offers better fuel economy.
Taylor says the H4 could be in the market by 2012 and could be joined by an even smaller H5 model. These new models are expected to replace the existing H2 and H3 models as the mainstays of the brand.
The primary concern for Hummer is to arrest plummeting sales, which are down 64 percent from last year with only 8,500 units sold so far in 2009.
Inventory levels have also drastically reduced across dealerships leading to supply constraints. Tengzhong will need to identify a production partner soon as GM will cease production of Hummers by the end of 2010.
Speculations now suggest that the deal is to be completed around December 1, 2009.