The Humvee bids the Hummer bye bye

The U.S. Army makes it clear that the military Humvee will remain American made, despite the fact that GM is selling the Hummer brand to a Chinese company.

Amid recent developments of General Motors' chapter 11 bankruptcy and its decision to sell the all-mighty Hummer brand to a Chinese company , there's a silver lining. And it's a big one.

The U.S. Army wanted to make it crystal clear Thursday that the HMMWV (widely known as "Humvee")--the original High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle that inspired the creation of the Hummer--will continue to be made in the United States, by an American-owned company.

According to Lt. Col. Martin Downie, the U.S. Army's spokesman, though the Army's Humvee and the civilian Hummer look similar and share a common appearance, the rights to produce those two different vehicles are no longer owned by the same company.

The manufacturer of the Humvee has always been AM General, an American company based in South Bend, Ind. The company produced the first 55,000 Humvees for the Army in 1985 and it continues today to produce the Humvee for the military.

In the early 1990s, AM General began producing a civilian version of the Humvee, calling it a "Hummer." By the late 1990s, AM General sold the Hummer name to General Motors.

It's important to note that if the deal goes through, Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery Company, the Chinese-based prospective buyer of the Hummer brand, will not have access to the military's Humvee, including its designs, unique performance capabilities, and technologies.

Nonetheless, there's one thing Sichuan Tengzhong for sure will gain access to and possibly take advantage of: the vehicle's capability to use a lot of gasoline in a short distance.

About the author

CNET editor Dong Ngo has been involved with technology since 2000, starting with testing gadgets and writing code for CNET Labs' benchmarks. He now manages CNET San Francisco Labs, reviews networking and storage products, and also writes about other topics from online security to new gadgets and how technology impacts the life of people around the world.

 

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