Hennessey’s 6-wheel V-8 Raptor, achieve Hot Wheels glory, Hummer’s hefty batteries


VelociRaptor 6×6: 700-hp doomsday rig is very Hennessey

Intake: You say four wheels aren’t enough for your Ford F-150 Raptor R? Meet the Hennessey VelociRaptoR 6×6. The Texas-based turner has taken a stock Raptor R and, for once, left the 700-horsepower powertrain alone. What they have done instead is add an extended boxed frame and a second, fully functional, locking rear axle, resulting in what they say is a 50-percent improvement in tractive grip. The suspension features live valve Fox dampers and Brembo performance brakes. A three-inch lift raises the body in preparation for Hennessey’s custom 20-inch alloy wheels with 37-inch off-road tires. Lastly, an expansive 8-foot load bed replaces the stock 5.5-foot bed – cargo capacity is improved by more than 45 percent. There are also new front and rear bumpers, LED lights, and Hennessey VelociRaptoR badging. The resulting VelociRaptoR 6×6 is a “beastly machine” nearly 27 feet long, roughly 7 feet tall, and 7 feet wide, with a curb weight of approximately 6,500 pounds.

Exhaust: It isn’t cheap, of course. The VelociRaptoR 6×6 is priced from $499,999, including the base Ford F-150 Raptor R. Hennessey backs the build with a “comprehensive” 3-year/36,000-mile warranty. – Steven Cole Smith

Mercedes announces an EQS that’s only for Angelinos

Intake: Mercedes is selling just 150 examples of its new EQS 580 4Matic Sedan City Edition, and they’re only available to residents of the greater Los Angeles area. Setting the special edition apart is a package of e-mobility perks, one of which is even designed to replace the car itself on short trips. Alongside credits for a free home charger, and $250 worth of public charging on the ChargePoint Network, the City Edition comes with a year’s free access to an Unagi Model One Voyager e-scooter. The tiny two-wheeler has a range of up to 25 miles, encouraging owners to leave the car behind for local journeys.

Available in Diamond White Metallic with Macchiato Beige and Space Grey leather cabin or a Twilight Blue, Neva Grey/Sable Brown combination, the car gets natural grain yacht-design walnut trim, AMG wheels, and a special badge design featuring the outline of the state of California. A smog-busting Energizing Air Control Plus system with HEPA filtration is said to remove 99 percent of particulate pollution from the cabin air, while there’s also a dashcam to capture the city’s crazy driving antics. Mercedes will make a donation to the California chapter of Safe Kids Worldwide for every model sold.

Exhaust: What city should get a special edition next? Perhaps a New York edition with noise cancellation technology to mute the sound of the sirens or a Miami special in South Beach pastel hues? Let us know in the comments. — Nik Berg

Your sixth attempt at 1:64-scale glory has arrived

Intake: The Hot Wheels Legends Tour presented by Mobil 1 is back for a sixth year. The contest, which bills itself as the world’s largest traveling car show, will kick off on May 13 in Miami, making its way across 17 countries with live, interactive shows featuring some of the wildest automotive builds. More than just the car shows, the Legends Tour is a months-long contest to pick the next 1:64-scale car that Mattel, Hot Wheels’ parent company, will press into production. Fans around the world can tune in to the virtual Grand Finale, which will be held on November 11, to see which car will ultimately enter 1:64-scale immortality.

Exhaust: Past winners have included some properly incredible builds, such as this Volvo P1800 gasser named Ain’t No Saint, and this home-built 1000-hp 1970 Pontiac Trans Am. This event is one of the best in existence to stoke custom car enthusiasm and we love hearing that it’s back for another year. — Nathan Petroelje

Dealers will need a forklift to fix recalled Hummers

GMC HUMMER EV SUV front three quarter reflection

Intake: Back in October of 2022—on the 13th day of that month, though who’s counting—GMC announced a stop-delivery for its electric reboot of the Hummer. Three owners had reported, late that summer, that water had entered their vehicle’s battery packs; in two cases, preventing a start, and in one, causing the vehicle “los[e] propulsion while driving,” as the automaker delicately puts it to NHTSA. GMC traced the issue to improperly cured electrocoating on the battery tray and inadequate urethane sealing. 735 vehicles from the 2022–23 model years came off the shelf. Now, there’s a fix: Replace the battery packs and, as necessary, the high-voltage drive motor cables. The only hitch? Dealers need to have a big forklift on hand to unload the crates of batteries. Smart, since a single Ultium battery pack can weigh as much as a small car.

Exhaust: Weight isn’t the only factor here. High voltage batteries like the Hummers’ are regulated by dangerous goods transportation laws, and a dealer who violates them is subject to fines of, ah, serious weight. A dealer must also have on staff an employee who qualifies as a Certified Dangerous Good Professional. You can take the course online, but the litany of fees is … well, dangerous bad if you had to pay out of pocket. — Grace Houghton

GM, Samsung SDI announce $3B joint-venture battery plant

Cadillac Lyriq front three quarter

Intake: According to a new report from Reuters, Samsung SDI and General Motors have announced a joint-venture battery production facility that will go somewhere in the U.S. The location is still undecided, but Samsung SDI said it will invest $3 billion into the project, which is targeted to break ground in 2026. General Motors is looking to diversify its battery supply chain as it seeks to catch up to Tesla in the EV space.

Exhaust: GM said last year that it expects to build 400,000 EVs in North America from 2022 through mid-2024 and that it plans to increase capacity to 1 million EVs annually in North America by 2025. To meet those goals, the company will need all the battery manufacturing capacity it can muster. — Nathan Petroelje


Check out the Hagerty Media homepage so you don’t miss a single story, or better yet, bookmark it. To get our best stories delivered right to your inbox, subscribe to our newsletters.

Read next Up next: Bye-bye, Chevrolet Bolt


    A forklift and dangerous goods cert to fix my vehicle? These e rides really are like cell phones – toss when broken, buy new. No more DIY. I hope seaweed(?) based gasoline becomes a reality, otherwise this hobby is done.

    I will have to disagree with your assessment. If gasoline were just becoming available today, it would be outlawed immediately because it’s a dangerous carcinogen that is extremely toxic and explosive. Just as they did at the turn of the 20th century, people will learn how to properly handle EV batteries and develop the tooling to deal with them. There are businesses already popping up, like Gruber Motors, that repair EV battery packs. there are other businesses, like Redwood Materials, the recycle EV battery packs and recover 97% of the materials in them to make new batteries. Finally, since EVs are computer controlled, just like modern cars, tuners are already working on developing hot rod versions of the programming.

    The VelociRaptor is just a joke. But Hennessey sells them to people with too much money on their hands.

    Batteries that need a forklift and so many other special needs for the Hummer. My problem with electric cars isn’t that their electric, it’s the batteries.

    Expensive equipment and certified drivers for it. To repair a factory defect. Is it just me, or does this seem like just one more attempt to eliminate dealerships altogether and implement an all new system? I have no idea of what a new system would be, but sure seems like the OEMs have been placing ever-increasingly difficult demands on the dealers in recent years.

    I’m so glad the 6 Wheel VelociRaptor finally gets an 8 goot bed –same as my 1940 International pickup.

    The battery pack on the hummer weighs as much as a small car? Sounds eco-friendly to produce/ charge/ dispose of in the future.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *