A high-performance version of the ELR has been in the rumormill ever since Cadillac introduced the plug-in hybrid , but the Detroit-based manufacturer has been rather silent on the matter. The vehicle was engulfed in even more obscurity earlier this year, when GM vice president Mark Reuss said Cadillac is looking at expanding the coupe ’s "tuning envelope" without revealing any actual details.
We have no idea what that means, but we might find out by the end of the year because the manufacturer started testing an ELR that appears to be sportier than the standard version launched for the 2014 model year. The news comes via Autoblog, who revealed that a coupe fitted with larger brakes and four-piston Brembo calipers borrowed from the Buick Regal GS just hit the streets.
Details are scarce right now, but an updated brake package can only mean one thing: Cadillac is planting more horsepower under the ELR’s hood. Add the fact that it wears a new grille hidden under a camouflaged nose and a new set of wheels, and it’s evident that a brawnier ELR is starting to take shape.
Still, there’s no confirmation that Cadillac is indeed prepping an ELR-V, but we’re definitely looking forward to seeing an ELR with more than 207 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque at its disposal.
Click past the jump to read more about the potential 2016 Cadillac ELR-V.
Finding a proper competitor for the Cadillac ELR is like trying to hunt mosquitoes with a rifle, but there are a couple of hybrids that sit below and above the coupe as far as performance and pricing are concerned.
The Volt shares a lot of underpinnings with the ELR, including the 1.4-liter four-cylinder "electric generator", but it falls short in terms of performance, with only 149 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque at its disposal. It also lacks the ELR’s appealing design and its luxurious interior, but it does come at a far cheaper price. Retailed from $34,995 before any federal tax credits, the Volt is half the price of a Cadillac ELR, which fetches at least $75,000.
Chevy doesn’t offer too many standard amenities, but the four-door comes equipped with LED running lights and taillights, heated and power-adjustable mirrors and 17-inch aluminum wheels. The vehicle needs about 8.7 seconds to reach 60 mph from a standing start, while top speed is just 100 mph. When it comes to fuel economy, both the ELR and the Volt boast similar figures. The maximum range in EV mode sits at 38 miles, while combined range can return up to 382 miles.
When sipping gas, the Volt delivers 37 mpg, but the mileage goes up to 97 MPGe when using electric power exclusively. It takes about 14 hours to charge the Volt to maximum capacity.
Gallery Chevrolet Volt
Yes, I know, it’s far from being apples for apples, but at least we’re looking at something similar in size and shape. Performance-wise, the i8 is a rocket compared to the ELR, thanks to the 362 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque generated by its high-tech drivetrain.
Unlike the ELR and the Volt, the German hybrid pairs a 1.5-liter, three-cylinder engine and an electric motor that’s in charge with spinning the front wheels. The conventional unit delivers 231 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque, while the gas-free unit packs 131 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque.
The power goes to the wheels through separate channels. A more common six-speed automatic connects the three-pot to the rear wheels, while a two-stage transmission makes sure the electric motor motivates the front wheels.
With so much oomph at its disposal, the i8 takes only 4.2 seconds to accelerate from naught to 60 mph and reaches a top speed of 155 mph. The EV range, however, is inferior to that of the ELR or the Volt at 22 miles, while total range can go up to 372 miles depending on which driving mode is used. Pricing-wise, the BMW goes through the roof at $135,925, fetching more than a Caddy and a Chevy put together.