What's New for 2010
Other than the adoption of flex-fuel capability for the 5.3-liter V8 engine, the Hummer H3T carries on unchanged for 2010.
Those truck consumers who were hoping Hummer would bring out a pickup had their collective wish granted last year with the H3T. Apart from the available V8 engine adopting flexible-fuel capability, the 2010 Hummer H3T stays the course. That means this big boy's Tonka truck is essentially an H3 SUV with a longer wheelbase and a pickup bed in back instead of a covered cargo area.
Based as it is on the H3, the H3T shares its strengths and weaknesses. The former include rugged styling cues (such as the massive wheel flares and low-profile windows) and its aforementioned off-road prowess, while the latter include visibility on par with a Brinks truck, a pudgy curb weight approaching 5,000 pounds and poor fuel mileage. To get all that mass moving, most H3Ts rely on a five-cylinder engine that makes 239 horsepower and 241 pound-feet of torque. The top-dog Alpha version, however, gets a brawny V8 that cranks out 300 hp and 320 lb-ft. But either way, you're still looking at mid-teens fuel economy.
For drivers wanting to play in the dirt, the 2010 Hummer H3T will likely satisfy thanks to its aggressive approach/departure angles, generous ground clearance, standard skid plates and ample wheel articulation. But for everyone else, the H3T makes about as much sense as using a chain saw to prune rose bushes. More sensible choices would be more space- and fuel-efficient alternatives such as the Honda Ridgeline, Nissan Frontier Crew Cab and Toyota Tacoma Double Cab.
Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options
The 2010 Hummer H3T is a midsize crew-cab pickup truck that's available in five trim levels: base, Adventure, Alpha, Luxury and Alpha with Leather.
The base H3T features 16-inch steel wheels, full skid plates, air-conditioning, cruise control, OnStar telematics, Bluetooth connectivity, keyless entry, full power accessories and a six-speaker CD stereo with satellite radio. The Adventure adds an off-road suspension, a shorter-geared transfer case for better hill-climbing and descending, front and rear locking differentials, 33-inch off-road tires and a Monsoon audio system with a six-CD changer.
The Alpha adds a V8 engine, alloy wheels and embroidered headrests to the base H3T. The Luxury trim adds the following to the base H3T: the Monsoon system, leather upholstery, power and heated front seats and oversized floor mats. The range-topping Alpha with Leather has the features of the Luxury trim along with chrome wheels and exterior trim.
Option highlights (depending on trim) include a power sunroof, an in-dash six-CD changer, a navigation system and a rearview camera.
Powertrains and Performance
All 2010 Hummer H3T models come with full-time four-wheel drive with a two-speed transfer case. All except the Alpha are powered by a 3.7-liter inline five-cylinder engine that makes 239 hp and 241 lb-ft of torque. The standard transmission is a five-speed manual, and a four-speed automatic is optional.
Although the five makes decent power, it's simply outmatched by the H3T's near-5,000-pound curb weight, so acceleration is leisurely at best. Towing capacity is rated at 4,400 pounds when properly equipped, and EPA fuel economy estimates stand at 14 mpg city/18 mpg highway and 15 mpg combined with either transmission.
The Alpha features a 5.3-liter V8 (with 300 hp and 320 lb-ft of torque) mated to a four-speed automatic transmission. Towing capacity goes up to 5,900 pounds, and we'd expect its performance to be about the same as the H3 Alpha, which sprinted from zero to 60 mph in a relatively quick 8 seconds flat. With this engine, fuel economy drops slightly to a 13/16/14 mpg rating.
Antilock disc brakes, traction control, stability control, the OnStar communications system and full-length side curtain airbags are all standard.
Interior Design and Special Features
Although the overall design is fairly handsome, the H3T's rather plain interior doesn't quite match its macho exterior. Build quality is solid, but the H3T's competitors utilize nicer materials. Also, stereo and climate interfaces aren't as user-friendly as those found in other GM vehicles. Still, the versions with the leather seating have an attractive two-tone color scheme along with contrasting piping on the seats, which spruces things up.
The seats are comfortable, though many drivers may take issue with the high beltline and low-profile window design, as they lead to lousy outward visibility. Rear-seat passengers enjoy ample legroom and decent support, but taller folks may find themselves uncomfortably close to the roof. The cargo box is about 5 feet long; though this is about the same as the standard offerings from the H3T's chief rivals, they typically offer 6-foot boxes as well.
At low speeds with the inline-5, there is sufficient punch to handle the cut and thrust of city driving. But when faced with freeway merging and inclines, the 2010 Hummer H3T grows winded, a result of its insufficient power for the vehicle's 4,900 pounds and bricklike aerodynamics. The H3T Alpha fares better. Throttle response is crisper with the V8 and it pulls harder through the midrange, but again, due to the considerable mass at hand, it's not the massive transformation one might expect.
Even though the H3T's longer wheelbase makes it less maneuverable on trails than the regular H3, it's still basically unstoppable when equipped with the Adventure package. With 9.5 inches of ground clearance, loads of wheel travel, aggressive approach and departure angles, oversized all-terrain tires and standard skid plates, the H3T can pretty much go anywhere without taking damage. Given this off-road capability, the H3T performs admirably on pavement, with decent stability at speed. The ride is surprisingly smooth and belies the H3's tough-truck nature. But we would still advise you to steer clear of the H3T if you never intend to take it off the beaten path.