EarthCruiser carbon pop-camper tops all-electric Hummer explorer RV
While the world's largest RV show gets underway over in Germany, American overlanders are gearing up for this year's third Overland Expo installment, OX Mountain West in Loveland, Colorado. As promised, the market's biggest, baddest electric camper to date has arrived just in time for the Rocky Mountain edition of show. EarthCruiser turns the neo Hummer into an all-electric off-grid expedition machine, and it does so with more flair than expected, topping its carbon fiber shell with a full-length pop-up roof high above a full floor plan with kitchen and dining space. It's an early look into the overlanding crystal ball.
The Chevrolet Silverado EV/GMC Sierra EV will ultimately make a better, more attainable platform for electric overlanding and camping, but with months or years left before the more mainstream versions of those trucks debut, EarthCruiser USA selected the GMC Hummer EV Pickup, instead. The Oregon company's customer base is used to spending six figures on their camping rigs, anyway, so what's another US$100K on an electric base vehicle?
EarthCruiser has built the new camper – which doesn't go by any particular name more individual than "GMC HUMMER EV EarthCruiser upfit" – to fit the Hummer EV's 5-foot (1.5-m) bed like a beanie. It employs carbon fiber construction to save weight and shapes the camper to match the rugged intensity of the Hummer itself. The slight angling of the front edge gives it a more streamlined look than the flat alcove face of the average pickup camper or topper.
EarthCruiser doesn't dare estimate how much of the Hummer EV's range the camper might nibble away, or how much it adds to the obese e-pickup's weight, but it's clearly done its best to keep those figures as low as possible. And with between 314 and 381 miles (505 and 613 km) of GMC-estimated max range and DC fast-charging capability that sucks in 100 miles (161 km) of electricity in 12 minutes at the charger, the Hummer EV Pickup does have some road trip potential.
After riding to the night's resting point, the entire EarthCruiser camper roof pops extra high to create an interior with 76 to 80 inches (193 to 203 cm) of standing height from the floor and 35 inches (89 cm) of sitting height over the alcove double bed.
We were expecting just a basic camper or topper shell with pop-up roof and bed, aimed at keeping weight and range drag as low as possible, but EarthCruiser has given the Hummer EV pop-camper a more complete floor plan. The passenger-side kitchen area has all the usual necessities, including an induction cooktop, fridge/freezer and sink. A couple steps away, the compact dinette comprises an adjustable table and L-shaped bench. Unlike in the retired EarthCruiser GZL pickup camper series, the Hummer model's dinette does not convert into a second bed, limiting the new camper to two overnight occupants.
EarthCruiser has made its EV camper electric through and through, wiring in a 460-Ah 12-V lithium battery bank for up to seven days of off-grid power. It has also included a 1,500-W inverter, 605-W roof-mounted solar panel setup, touchscreen command center, and 120- and 12-V outlets.
This particular camper is too small for EarthCruiser's signature entryway bathroom with deployable shower enclosure, but it does come with an outdoor shower and folding flat-pack toilet. Fresh water is stored away in a 51-L tank and drained to a 26.5-L gray water tank. A 12-V water heater gets hot water flowing to the taps.
EarthCruiser doesn't mention an onboard air/space heater but does say the camper is designed for four-season use. We're not sure how far we'd trust that fully meshed pop-up in cold winter weather without a heating system, but perhaps one could jigger piped-in heat from the Hummer itself.
"Using our years of overlanding expertise, we have ensured nothing is out of place, unnecessary or wasted in this vehicle," said EarthCruiser USA CEO and Founder Lance Gillies. "This collaboration with the GMC team has provided the perfect opportunity to demonstrate the zero-tailpipe emission possibilities for overland and recreational vehicle travelers."
After this weekend's Overland Expo Mountain West debut, EarthCruiser plans to have its camper ready for Hummer EV Pickup owners in 2024. Reservations are available now with a $100 refundable deposit, but EarthCruiser has not yet listed pricing. And bad news for anyone who might just now be considering a Hummer EV as a viable 4x4/overland camper option: GMC's reservation books are all filled up.