Cadillac Needs to Nail the LYRIQ If It’s Going to be Even Remotely Successful
Outside of the Chevy Bolt, GM doesn’t really have any electric vehicles. The Bolt was a huge step forward with its 259 miles of range on a good day, but GM is definitely falling behind, and that’s why Cadillac is set to “spearhead GM’s shift to an all-electric future.” The LYRIQ that has been teased here is the first of many to come and will be powered by GM’s Ultimum batteries. It will also ride on the same next-gen battery-electric architecture that will underpin most Cadillac and Chevy EVs going forward. We’ll get our first full look at it on August 6th, but what exactly can we expect?
Cadillac Escalade Electric - Everything We Know
With the fifth-generation Cadillac Escalade out and about, we can now turn our attention to the all-electric version of the big-boned luxury SUV.
Cadillac changed quite a lot of the Escalade equation, and although the flagship SUV still shares its platform with the likes of Chevrolet Suburban and Tahoe, the new bag of goodies includes an independent rear suspension, curved OLED displays inside, and both gasoline V-8 and diesel straight-six engines. But how about the all-electric Escalade? What’s in store for the emission-free Caddy SUV? Here’s everything we know so far about the Cadillac Escalade Electric.
The Six-Figure Cadillac Celestiq Sounds Like an Attempted Money Grab That Will Fail
Let’s be honest, we you think about Cadillac, you think about mid-level luxury. They can be rather luxurious, but they are still GM and just really don’t compete with full-scale luxury brands like BMW, Mercedes, or even Audi. You damn sure wouldn’t cross-shop a Cadillac sedan vs. a Rolls-Royce or Bentley, though, would you? Well, as it turns out, GM and Cadillac think you will, and that’s why they are going to introduce the Cadillac Celestiq, an overly luxurious (or so they say) electric sedan that will sit comfortably in six-figure territory. A Cadillac…. In six-figure territory.
If Cadillac Can’t Sell EVs, the Brand Will Get the Same Treatment as Pontiac and Saturn
General Motors’ decision to identify Cadillac as the lead brand towards its plans for electrification comes with a lot of weight and expectations. It could also be the key to Cadillac’s survival as an auto brand. GM’s newly appointed president, Mark Reuss, acknowledged as much in a conversation with Reuters. According to Reuss, electrification is the only place the General can take the brand if there’s any chance for Caddy to survive. It’s a delicate place to be in, but the changing winds in the auto industry have left General Motors with few options on the table for its once proud luxury marquee. If Cadillac doesn’t thrive as an EV brand, it could very well end up with the same fate as Pontiac and Saturn, two GM-owned auto brands that are no longer with us today.
Is Cadillac’s Surprise EV Concept a Preview of the Next-Gen Cadillac Escalade?
A few days after identifying Cadillac as the brand that will spearhead its EV initiative, General Motors doubled down on that announcement by revealing a sketch design of an EV crossover concept that could point to its plans for Cadillac in the not-so-distant future. The design was unveiled at the Cadillac XT6’s launch party ahead of the 2019 North American International Auto Show. The General didn’t dive into the details behind its first electric vehicle, opting only to say that it will use an all-new skateboard electric platform and will come in either two-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. It’s also going to be a crossover, adding weight to the company’s renewed focus on crossovers and SUVs to drive the brand moving forward. That said, is it possible that this electric concept is actually a preview of the next-generation Cadillac Escalade?
Add Cadillac to the list of automakers that are planning to infuse its lineup with plug-in hybrid versions as a response to tightening regulations in some of the company’s most important markets. The revelation was made by Cadillac chief Johan de Nysschen in a conversation with Automotive News at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
According to de Nysschen, Cadillac’s main objective in the coming years is to beef up its lineup with plug-in hybrids to ensure that it remains competitive in a market like China. The company is already hard at work on meeting the plug-in hybrid CT6 sedan’s expected launch date sometime in late 2016. Once the CT6 hits the market, expect Cadillac to continue down this road and maximize its plug-in hybrid system on as many models as it can accommodate.
The onus being put on plug-ins means that less is being paid on developing an electric car. De Nysschen admitted as much, saying that plug-ins are “more practical” than EVs. That doesn’t mean Cadillac’s completely shut its door on ever developing its own electric car. On the contrary, it’s on the company’s to-do list. It’s just not a top priority at the moment.
Besides, it already has the advantage of having an EV platform in place, thanks to its ties with Chevrolet and the Chevy Volt under the General Motors umbrella. Unlike other companies that are developing their own EV tech from the ground-up, Caddy already has the Volt to go to should it decide to finally build an electric car.
So don’t expect a fully electric Cadillac to hit the market any time soon. The American automaker is focusing on plug-ins at the moment. Once that’s been accomplished, then its attention will turn to doing a full EV. It’s all about priorities for Cadillac.
Continue reading after the jump for the full story.
Launched with great fanfare, the 2014 Cadillac ELR turned out to be a huge disappointment. GM sold roughly 800 examples of the plug-in hybrid coupe, with about half of the Cadillac dealers declining to place any preorders for the vehicle. With that in mind, it’s not at all surprising the manufacturer is elbows deep into rolling out a significantly updated version of the ELR. The revised coupe was initially scheduled to arrive for the 2016 model and make its public debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show. The problem is, the ELR 2.0 didn’t show up alongside the 2016 ATS-V Sedan and Coupe in the City of Angels.
Not that many people noticed its absence, but it’s rather uncommon for such delays to happen in today’s auto industry. However, it seems Cadillac had plenty of reasons not to show the new ELR in Los Angeles, mostly due to system integration difficulties. According to GM Inside News, quoting insider sources, Caddy didn’t have enough time to refine a few of the features that are supposed to turn the ELR into a "highly autonomous vehicle."
Specifics as to what kind of features the source is referring to are scarce, but word has it Cadillac wants to debut GM’s Super Cruise feature with the next ELR. The technology takes control of steering, acceleration and braking at highway speeds or in stop-and-go traffic, which would make the ELR semi-autonomous. Apparently the system, and other features state-of-the-art features slated to find their way into the coupe, are not that easy to integrate, and the debut has been delayed with no target date for a debut. Well that’s a bummer...
Click past the jump to read more about the Cadillac ELR.
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.
What’s more, the said coupe has been spotted in the company of a Tesla Model S, the all-electric sedan that’s been smoking Dodge Vipers at the drag strip.
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.
Even though the Holiday season is about a month away, Cadillac and Saks Fifth Avenue joined forces to develop a special edition Cadillac ELR that will be displayed in the 2013 Saks Holiday Catalog. This special edition is limited to only 100 units, and you can order it now. Caddy will start delivering this limited ELR in March 2014, and it checks in at a base price of $89,500 — nearly $15k more than a base ELR, which is priced at $75,995.
So, what kind of goodies do you get for this extra cash, besides exclusivity? The 2014 Cadillac Saks Fifth Avenue Special Edition ELR features an exclusive White Diamond exterior paint combined with an interior in either Jet Black or Light Cashmere.
The ELR also comes with an upgraded 240-volt charging station with professional installation — permits included — and their own ELR Concierge Representatives to offer information on battery care, home charging, service scheduling, and news and updates.
Oh wait, you were expecting a little more for your $15k... Sorry folks, that’s about all she wrote. We don’t know about this one; exclusivity is cool and all, but $15k for a $3k charger and some exclusive colors, not impressed...
Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Cadillac ELR.
Cadillac unveiled a first ELR concept back in 2011 and ever since then everyone was pretty sure a production will also follow. Things got pretty clear in 2012 when a leak from OnStar confirmed Cadillac will dive into the hybrid realm with a vehicle not named "Escalade." The model finally made its world debut at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show and according to the first official details we have, it offers "an unprecedented combination of luxury, advanced engineering and progressive design."
However, this is not the first time in Caddy’s long history that it’s tread into the economy car world. The first one was the laughably Cavalier-like Cimarron. If you recall, Cadillac was so embarrassed by the Cimarron that the automaker refused to call it a Cadillac and instead dubbed it the “Cimarron by Cadillac” originally. GM later forced a name change to “Cadillac Cimarron.”
Needless to say Caddy does not want to relive those days, so they took things pretty serious with the ELR. The model is being powered by the latest GM EREV technology that combined a pure electric drive and an efficient, range-extending 1.4 liter gasoline-powered electric generator.
Updated 02/10/2014: Cadillac unveiled a first commercial for its new ELR electric coupe featuring actor Neil McDonough. Enjoy!
Updated 03/25/2014: Cadillac unveiled a new video for the new ELR coupe which hopes it will help it sell the electric coupe better. Enjoy!
Click past the jump to read the entire review to see if the ELR will end up on TIME’s “50 Worst Cars of All Time” list alongside the Cimarron.
Jay Leno is famous for reviewing classic cars, muscle cars, sports cars and supercars, but sometimes he slides into the driver’s seat of something else. This just so happens to be one of those times, as he focuses his attention on a new electric car: the Cadillac ELR.
The car was delivered to him by Frank Saucedo, Director of Advanced Design at GM, who is also offered a few more details on how the ELR was designed.
The ELR is powered by an electric drive unit, powered by a 16.5kWh T-shaped lithium-ion battery pack. This electric drive unit delivers a total of 207 horsepower and a peak torque of 295 pound-feet. Additionally, the ELR features an 84-horsepower, 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine that works as an electric generator. This Caddy EV delivers a range of 35 miles of pure electric driving, depending on terrain, driving techniques and temperature, and over 300 miles of total driving with a fully charged battery and a full tank of premium gasoline (9.3 gallons).
Check out the video to see if Leno was impressed how the ELR handled on the road.
With just a few days before its official debut at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show, Cadillac photofraphed the production-version Cadillac ELR driving through the mountains of Southern California during development testing. Cadillac was kind enough to offer us this camouflaged image along with the promise that the ELR will "change the way people think about luxury and electrification."
The production-version ELR was previewed in 2011 with the ELR Concept and will likely be offered with the same electric powertrain used in the Chevrolet Volt. However, unlike Volt, the new ELR will offer an increased level of luxury and improved interior comfort. The production version will borrow most of its design elements from the concept version, including the Cadillac’s signature vertical headlights and the vertical LED taillights.
Full details on the production version ELR will be unveiled on January 15th. The model will go on sale as a 2014 model and will be priced at about $70k.
As if it wasn’t already obvious, given GM is about as good at holding its secrets as a tissue is at holding water, the Cadillac ELR has finally been confirmed for production. Production will kick off in late 2013 in the automaker’s Detroit-Hamtramck factory alongside the Chevy Volt, Opel Ampera, and Holden Volt. This will also bring about $35 million in updates to the plant in order to get it ready to handle the extra production and this high-tech extended-range EV.
There are still no exact figures on its driveline, but we all assume it will be based on the Chevy Volt’s platform. GM’s presser does let us know that the ELR will feature a T-shaped lithium-ion battery and will run primarily on electricity. Once the battery becomes discharged, a 4-cylinder engine will kick in to recharge the battery.
We’re all anticipating – maybe more like hoping – that if the ELR uses the Volt’s drivetrain, GM will retune the system to be a little more performance-oriented. Given the sporty look of the concept version of the ELR, it just wouldn’t sit right with us if the ELR takes over 9 seconds to get to 60 mph, like the Volt does.
We’ll keep an eye on the ELR’s progress and relay its official specs to you just as soon as GM leaks – err – releases them.
Click past the jump to read GM’s full presser.
On the surface, the Chevy Volt is actually a pretty good looking car, if you are able to ignore the fact that it pumps out only 149 horsepower from its paltry1.4-liter engine and uses an electric motor for 30 miles before the gas engine ever kicks in. We’re not trying to say it’s a sports car, but it could certainly fall into the sports sedan area.
Unfortunately, we come right back to that 149 ponies and that immediately disqualifies this otherwise stylish car from sniffing the sports sedan segment. Well, GM obviously has noted the potential for the Volt and rumors are now swirling around that Chevy will start installing the turbocharged 2.0-liter engine that the all-new Buick Verano T is receiving into the Volt.
As of now, this is still a rumor, but given that the Cadillac ELR and its sexy exterior is due to debut any time now and will likely ride on the same platform as the Volt, it only makes sense to use the powerful boosted 2.0. The ELR with only 149 horsepower would be like dumping a Civic Si engine in a Ferrari, it just doesn’t quite fit the looks.
We are uncertain if the Volt receives the full-powered version of the 2.0-liter engine, or a detuned model, it will mean that the Volt could push up to 270 horsepower, if it receives the full-power 2.0. Also floating around is a rumor that this new engine will receive a larger electric motor for a little extra gasoline-free oomph.
All we can say is that we truly hope that these rumors are true, as the Volt in its current form is underwhelming, to say the least. We’ll keep you updated as more details roll out on this possible upgrade.
Here’s a sexier approach to the Chevrolet Volt. Cadillac’s Converj concept takes the electric car with a gas back powertrain (now called Voltec) from the Chevy and wraps it in a sleek body that reminds of a larger version of the CTS coupe. The Converj is a strict four-seater. While this is used to give this car a sportier image, this is also necessary because a big center section is taken up by the "T" shaped battery used to power the car. The battery pack contains more than 220 lithium-ion cells that can power the car for up to 40 miles. After the battery runs out, the electric will be replenished by a gas-powered generator. Just like the Volt, the car is designed to be fully charged after plugged in for eight hours on a normal household 120-volt outlet (three hours for 240v).
There is plenty of function to the Converj form. The dark roof contains solar panels to help recharge the car and the sleek body helps cheat the millage-killing wind. Now all that has to happen is for General Motors to find the capital to put the Cadillac of electric cars in production.
UPDATE 08/12/11: After a few jumps on both sides of the fence, Cadillac has officially given the green light for the production of the Converj. The latest news about Cadillac’s resident electric car concept is that GM executives have finally gone ahead and given their blessing to have the Converj hit the production block for a 2013 launch leading up to a release as a 2014 model. Took them a while to finally decide, but hey, better late than never, right?
Press release after the jump.
The Cadillac Converj made quite an impression on a lot of people after it was unveiled at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show late last year. At that time, the Converj, which was being pegged as an upscale Chevy Volt derivative, was being touted as having a production date after 2012.
But now, it appears that the Detroit Auto Show could be the last time we’ll ever see the Converj after reports have indicated that General Motors is scrapping the car permanently.
GM has yet to confirm nor deny these reports but according to Auto Observer, the main issue surrounding the scrapping of the Converj was that the overall weight of the car – with all the added amenities – would be too heavy to even achieve a 20-mile electric driving range, at which point it became implausible to build a high-end version of the Volt without sacrificing all the luxuries that would have made it, well, high-end. Even if it the Converj did manage to scratch the 20-mile electric driving range – about half of the Volt’s marketed 40-mile range – General Motors would be forced to tack on an extra $30,000 of added cost for each car.
The loss of the Converj is a shame to a lot of us, especially after its highly-successful debut at the Detroit Auto Show. It just goes to show that in the auto industry, nothing’s for certain until we see it out on the streets.
General Motors is heading in a new direction with the scheduled production version of the Chevrolet Volt extended range electric vehicle that is set to come out sometime in the near future, however it was the luxury version of this economical EV, the Cadillac Converj, that most recently stole the spotlight at the 2009 Miami Auto Show, taking home the Concept Vehicle of the Show award. The Converj is set to be built upon the same platform as the Chevrolet Volt, and it was back in January at the 2009 North American International Auto Show where the Converj made its debut, GM Vice Chairman Bob Lutz said if the luxury EV was approved, that the production model would resemble the concept, much like the Camaro did.
The Converj concept is a strict four seater, and although it has a swept back coupe like profile which is used to give this car a sportier image, the seating arrangement is also necessary because a large part of the car’s center section is taken up by the "T" shaped battery used to power the car. The battery pack contains more than 220 lithium ion cells that can power the car for up to 40 miles. After the battery runs out, the electric will be replenished by a gas powered engine that exclusively charges the battery. Just like the Volt, the car is designed to be fully charged after plugged in for eight hours on a normal household 120 volt outlet, or in as little as three hours if you have a high capacity 240 volt socket.
Continued after the jump.
Just as we suspected, the Cadillac Converj is stuck in a conundrum. Yesterday’s story of a General Motors insider confirming the Converj’s production was matched by an official statement from GM. Cadillac spokesman David Caldwell told Inside Line, "There is no change to the status of Converj. It is a concept — a proposal — and it’s being reviewed, and the review is not completed."
No surprises there. Yesterday’s story was about an insider, not an official statement. But another insider let the beans spill even more. This one suggested to IL that the Converj’s fate lies in the hands of the presidential automotive task force that is helping GM create it’s viability plan. So Cadillac will likely have to prove that it needs to spend the money on the Converj to make money — that’s not an easy thing for a bureaucracy to understand.
Cadillac stunned us at the Detroit Auto Show with the Converj, and apparently we we not the only ones. A source inside General Motors told Motor Trend the buzz from the car has caused GM to green light the hybrid car for production.
Although GM won’t officially confirm the car’s production, the target is to have the Converj on sale in 2011 as a 2012. That’s pretty ambitions considering Chevy is working overtime to reach the 2010 target date on the Volt, the car on which the Converj is based. While the Volt’s set up of the lithium-ion battery pack with 1.4-liter combustion engine backup will be a good starting point, it will take Cadillac a while to develop its own exterior and interior. Also Cadillac will likely modify the Voltec platform to accept more batteries, allowing for more speed and greater luxury (weight).
The Converj will be a step in the right direction for the fuel-efficient cars GM needs to show on its viability plan. This makes the Converj in charge of its own fate, because the only way the Converj can go into production is if the government approves the plan due on June 1.
We were smitten when we saw the Converj concept at the Detroit Auto Show, and we were not the only ones. Not many were expecting Cadillac to take the Chevrolet Volt’s technology and give it this good of a re-skin.
General Motors must also be happy with the response because it’s already talking about the compromises needed for the Converj to make it into production. Bob Lutz was hinting at a 2013 production date, and by that time the Converj would get a set of rear doors. But GM’s management is looking to still keep as much of the coupe’s body intact. The new doors would be masked as much as possible, including hidden handles, and the overally effect would be the “four-door coupe” look made popular by the Mercedes-Benz CLS.
A full-blown no compromises coupe is the kind of vehicle we prefer, but we also can’t fault GM on this one. Two-door cars have a limited market appeal that trade a little less function for a little more image. So if the rear doors bother us that much, we’ll just settle for a CTS coupe (in silver or midnight blue, please).
Cadillac needs to trim its weight and its profile. It’s line-up is filled with cars that could be considered "gas hogs". But there is good news for Cadillac and GM, the high-mileage Volt technology likely will filter over to Cadillac. This is good for Cadillac’s gas milage, and it also gives GM a premium place to park the expensive hybrid technology.
This is also good for Cadillac’s line because many of its new projects seem to be put "on hold". Right now, the one car that was supposed to replace both the DTS and STS is no longer on deck, and so both cars will solider on. While other big-engined cars such as the XLR and Escalade have somewhat uncertain futures. The only car that still seems to be on track is a new small one that will slot under the CTS.
Persistent rumors have Cadillac introducing a car equipped with the E-Flex drivetrain to initially be introduced on the upcoming Chevrolet Volt.
GM isn’t denying the story. It isn’t confirming it, either. The impression they give is that of being entirely happy to let you think they might, but not even hinting that they would.
Here is GM spokesman Rob Peterson on the topic:
“The beauty of the E-Flex system is that it is flexible enough to incorporate different powertrain propulsion (...)