So much of the automotive industry these days is pushing for smaller, cleaner, electric intelligence. But some still like 'em big and heavy and dumb, and nothing hits that holy trinity quite like a Hummer. Mil-Spec Auto has released its latest military-inspired custom H1 build, and it's a brute.
Around 80 grand will get you a standard Hummer H1, but you'll need to fork out just under US$300K to take things to this level. Based north of Detroit, Mil-Spec Automotive takes H1s, strips them to the bare bones, and rebuilds them from the ground up with a focus on even tougher off-road capability as well as a touch of comfort and luxury that'd be completely alien to anyone who's ever driven one of these things in actual military spec.
This is build #006 of 12 "Launch Editions" to be built. It's a slant-back H1 with an LBZ-version 6.6-liter Duramax motor from the 2006 Alpha H1 that's far from standard – we're talking 500 horses and 1,000 lb-ft (1,356 Nm) of torque, a healthy increase from the 360hp/650 lb-ft (881 Nm) they were making out of the factory. The standard transmission wouldn't handle that kind of torque, so it's been beefed up with an Allison 6-speed worked over by MSA.
Indeed, the standard AWD drivetrain's been yanked as well, replaced with a more recent unit from a GM HD truck that makes this thing rear-wheel drive only until the wheels start slipping. The axles themselves get upgraded to the military versions from the Humvee, with a selectable ARB Air Locker on the rear.
The powder-coated frame features re-engineered engine mounts and a whole new aluminum welded floor, designed to help reduce road noise. There's also a bunch of sound-deadening material packed throughout the chassis and cabin "to overcome the H1's rattly DNA."
The Air-Ride suspension system is a beauty, adding about four inches of ride height adjustment to let you crank this thing up on a set of RideTech pneumatic airbags for heavy duty off-roading. It's self-leveling, automatically compensating for back-seat passengers or cargo, and the shocks are 8-way adjustable for damping.
If you're masochistic enough to try to maneuver this thing into a supermarket parking space, you can take some solace from the fact that the Deep Sky Black paint is kevlar-infused for durability. Mind you, there are colossal bull-bars on the front and back (complete with a 12,000-lb (5,443-kg) winch), so the other guy's probably going to come off worse, and there's a reversing camera to help make sure it's not your fault.
Let's take a look at the interior, which is finished in marine-grade canvas and two-tone black leather with all-weather vinyl instead of carpet. Only the front seat brackets remain from the original cabin – the dash is replaced with an in-house design featuring retro-style analog gauges including an altitude readout, GPS speedo and performance-capturing capability to capture your hero statistics.
Conveniences include four cup holders, vintage style air-con outlets, a stack of USB and 12-V power outlets, a marine-grade nine-speaker JL Audio stereo system, an on-board air compressor and tire inflation hose and dual batteries to keep you juiced up when you're running things off the power outdoors. The customer in this case has also asked for paracord grab-handles and some cute matching luggage from Pelican.
It's huge and nasty, with a certain kind of capable, adventurous class to it if you can look past the rampant crass wastefulness that pervades it from the donor vehicle out. Personally I'd love to take it for a drive, off-road if possible and far from the wagging little fingers of pedestrians at the lights.
Source: Mil-Spec Automotive
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