2006 HUMMER H3 Base
Compared to the bad-boy H1 and H2, the 2006 Hummer H3 is downright approachable. It's a midsize SUV built on the Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon pickup platform. Not only can you tackle two-track off-road trails in the H3 without wondering if you'll fit around the next bend, you also don't have to worry so much about flattening mailboxes while backing out of driveways, either.
The Hummer H3 shares only 10 to 15 percent of its components with the Colorado, among these its 220-hp, 3.5-liter, inline five-cylinder engine. Although noticeably smoother in this application, the engine is lugging around 700 extra pounds. Acceleration is fine around town, but highway passing maneuvers take planning. Throw in some elevation increases, and the H3 feels underpowered. This puts the new Hummer SUV at an immediate disadvantage alongside faster, mainstream SUVs like the Grand Cherokee and 4Runner that offer optional V8s.
However, the Hummer H3 redeems itself in other areas. It comes standard with a full-time four-wheel-drive system with a 2.64 reduction gear in 4 Lo. Pretty typical for a production SUV. However, there's an optional 4.03 transfer case that provides gearing so low you can creep down rocky slopes without using the brakes. As on Jeep's Wrangler Rubicon, the 4-to-1 transfer case is aimed at hard-core off-roaders who would ordinarily have to go to the aftermarket to get one. The H3 further bolsters its go-anywhere image with 9.1 inches of ground clearance, standard skid plates and optional 33-inch off-road tires.
We doubt many Grand Cherokee owners will give up Hemi power for an H3 with an inline five. But the otherwise well-rounded H3 is proof that Hummer SUVs clean up real good. If you're looking for a tough off-roader that seats five comfortably, the midsize 2006 Hummer H3 is worth a test-drive.
|Engine type||3.5L 5INAG3.5 Engine|
|Horsepower SAE net||220 rpm|
|Torque SAE net lb. ft.||225 rpm|
|Recommended fuel||regular unleaded|
|Fuel economy city/highway (mpg)||14/18|
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