The HUMVEE was one of the heroes of the first Gulf War. The versatile vehicle earned quite a reputation for its ability to overcome any obstacle. And when Hollywood superstar Arnold Schwarzenegger convinced the Army to sell him a HUMVEE, the civilian Hummer was born.
In December 1999, General Motors bought the Hummer brand from AM General, though the Indiana-based supplier still produces both the military and civilian vehicle, now known as the H1. Last Summer, it started rolling out the new H2, as well. Designed for civilian use only, it still bears a striking resemblance to the original. And while GM officials insist they’re loathe to benefit from Gulf War II, the current battle for Baghdad is putting the HUMVEE back in the headlines again. Along with the M1 tank and Abrams armored troop carrier, it’s at the heart of the battle and being seen on millions of TV screens around the world. That’s likely to only enhance Hummer’s reputation…and demand.