That new electric car will be the 2014 Cadillac ELR, the production version of 2009’s Converj concept car, and will most likely be revealed for the first time in production trim sometime next year.
The only official details we have on the ELR is that it will be a luxury coupe packing an electric drive unit, a four-cylinder range-extender and a T-shaped lithium-ion battery.
So far the ELR sounds like it’s just going to be a two-door Chevy Volt, but according to Car and Driver there will be some key differences.
Being a Cadillac, the ELR will obviously feature a much more luxurious interior and even more technological goodies. While this will add more weight to the platform, the higher pricetag of the ELR, estimated to be somewhere in the mid-$50k range, will mean Cadillac’s engineers will be able to employ more expensive lightweight materials to circumvent the issue.
Some of the features that will reportedly be fitted to the ELR include increased sound-deadening materials, active engine mounts and radar- and camera-based monitoring systems. Despite all of the extra features, the ELR’s curb weight should only be around 100 pounds heavier than the 3,800 pounds of the Volt thanks to the weight-saving measures.
A more powerful engine than the Volt’s 1.4-liter unit is also likely to be employed. The most likely option will be a new four-cylinder engine developed by Opel and displacing about 1.8 liters. This should allow for faster charging of the ELR’s battery and stronger performance when the internal combustion engine is sending drive to the wheels.
The battery, too, should be more powerful than the unit in the Volt, with capacity likely increased to 17.0 kWh or more in the ELR versus the 16.5 kWh in the latest 2013 Chevy Volt. This will likely be done by adding more prismatic lithium-ion cells to the Volt’s T-shaped battery.
Whatever Cadillac has in store for its 2014 ELR, we should know more soon as prototypes are already testing near GM’s headquarters in Detroit.