An Austrian start-up, Kriesel Electric, has developed an all-electric Hummer for Hollywood actor and former mayor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Kriesel Electric was founded by three brothers – Markus Kreisel, Philipp Kreisel and Johann Kreisel – working out of a small garage. Their work, to develop electric powertrains that could be used on traditional cars, caught the attention of backers such as Schwarzenegger. The actor had previously hired Kreisel Electric to swap-out his Mercedes-Benz G-class’ internal combustion engine with an electric powertrain.
“Kreisel Electric electrified my G-class last winter. And now a Hummer. If Kreisel keeps it up at this pace, I will soon be able to fly here from LA in an electric airplane,” said Schwarzenegger.
Kriesel Electric, during the unveiling of its prototype e-Hummer, also expanded its operations by inaugurating its new facility. The new facility will have an annual production capacity of 8,000 battery packs for cars, home-storage and aviation. It will also produce and develop prototypes for carmakers and other industries.
The brothers developed the Hummer HI off-road prototype in barely two months. It is equipped with high-performance batteries from Kreisel Electric with 100kWh capacity and two electric motors on the front and back axles, a system output of 490hp. The vehicle, which weighs 3,300kg, can achieve speeds of up to 120kph and has a range of about 300km.
To put it into perspective, the standard Hummer SUV is known to be one of the least fuel-efficient cars around while offering supreme off-road capability. The 2006 H1 model’s 6.6-litre V8 turbo-diesel engine developed 300hp and 705Nm of torque, and boasted an abysmal fuel economy of about 4.16kpl while emitting up to 470g CO2 per kilometre.
“With our electrified prototypes, we want to show what is possible using Kreisel technology. We will certainly not mass-produce these models. But our Hummer is a powerhouse in wolf’s clothing, one that drives so quietly even the sheep are not disturbed,” said Markus Kreisel, co-founder and CEO, Kreisel Electric.