The Cadillac Converj Concept made its debut at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show and caused quite a stir. Its sleek lines and innovative electric powetrain helped steal the show. But plans to build the car have been on hold, until now.
This week, Cadillac confirmed that the Converj Concept will become a reality in the guise of the upcoming ELR. Using technology from the Chevrolet Volt, the angular ELR coupe will be a performance-tuned extended-range electric coupe that may give Teslas a run for their money.
“The concept generated instant enthusiasm,” said Don Butler, vice president-Cadillac Marketing. “Like other milestone Cadillac models of the past, the ELR will offer something not otherwise present – the combination of electric propulsion with striking design and the fun of luxury coupe driving.”
The Cadillac ELR will feature an electric powertrain made up of a T-shaped lithium ion battery, an electric drive unit, and a four-cylinder engine-generator. Electricity will be the primary source of propulsion, helping it achieve zero-emissions in most driving conditions. When the battery is depleted, the ELR will be able to switch seamlessly to extended-range mode to enable driving for hundreds of additional miles, much like the Chevy Volt.
“There’s no mistaking it for anything but a Cadillac,” added Ed Welburn, GM vice president, Global Design. “An aggressive, forward-leaning profile and proportion showcases a uniquely shaped, modern vision of a personal luxury 2+2.”
By the time the ELR hits showrooms, it won’t be the only premium electric model sold. BMW has created an entirely new sub-brand of luxury hybrids and EVs, and Framingham Nissan expects Leaf EV technology to be applied to Infiniti’s lineup within the next few years.