Cadillac Teases ELR Extended-Range Luxury Coupe
General Motors has released a teaser image of the ELR extended-range coupe, the Cadillac luxury brand’s first entry into the electric vehicle market. The ELR Coupe, shown for the first time in a single mysterious-looking profile shot, is built around the same platform and powertrain underpinning the current Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid. While the ELR’s exact technical features and pricing details remain secret, we know the ELR will include the Volt’s lithium-ion battery pack and electric motor that, in the 5-door and 4-passenger Chevy, deliver an electric driving range of 37 miles. Once battery power is depleted, a 1.4-liter gasoline-fed engine fires up to power an onboard generator that provides the Volt with an additional 300 miles of driving range.
The ELR Coupe officially debuts in a few weeks time, during the annual 2013 Detroit Auto Show, and sales are expected to begin sometime in early 2014. Production will take place at the same Detroit-Hamtramck factory where the Volt is assembled. The original idea for a plug-in hybrid Cadillac was first seen in concept form—and initially badged as the Cadillac Converj—during the Detroit Show back in 2009. At the time, the Converj was widely praised for its edgy exterior design, coupled to its eco-conscious pairing of an electric motor and gasoline engine. Now it remains to be seen whether Cadillac focuses on offering a performance advantage over the Chevy Volt, or if greater emphasis has been placed on boosting electric-only driving range.
From a design standpoint, at least, it appears Cadillac is staying very close to what was previewed with Converj concept car. From the side, the ELR has the same forward-thrusting greenhouse, along with an aggressive side character line extending from the doors to the rear taillights. With the Chevrolet Volt priced at approximately $39,000 (before factoring in state and Federal incentives), it seems likely the ELR will sticker in the region of $55,000 to $60,000. That should provide enough marketing wiggle room between the ELR and the ‘lesser’ Volt, while still undercutting the prices of electric rivals like the Tesla Model S and Fisker Karma.
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