Cadillac launched the production version of its Converj range-extender coupe, first seen at the 2009 Detroit show as a concept and now due to go into production at the end of this year, at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
Now badged Cadillac ELR, the car uses the Chevrolet Volt drivetrain but the body is all new, incorporating specific aerodynamic features to improve the car's efficiency – the underbody is fully sealed and the Cadillac egg crate grille is modified, delivering a coefficient of drag of 0.30.
Underneath is a tweaked version of the Volt's drivetrain. The most notable change is to the battery, which can now supply more of its overall capacity that the Volt's can. Chief Engineer Chris Thomason said that they decided to “exercise the battery a bit more,” giving the ELR a range of about 35 miles, similar to the Volt's despite being around 80kg heavier.
Total torque output is 295lb ft, while total power is given as 204hp. A full charge using a 240v outlet takes around 4.5 hours. Expect a 0-60mph time of around 8sec, slightly faster than the Volt's 9sec. Standard wheels are 20-inch units.
Inside, the ELR's cabin utilizes what Cadillac promises are high-quality materials and assembly. It comes with an 8-inch touch screen and an automatic cup holder. It also debuts a new look for Cadillac interiors that will heavily influence the next CTS sedan.
“ELR is an unprecedented combination of luxury, advanced engineering and progressive design in a coupe that is both sporty and environmentally friendly,” said Bob Ferguson, Cadillac global vice president. “This is a pivotal moment in Cadillac's history, as we continue our product-driven expansion.”
Executive Publisher Paul Pfanner and Executive Producer John Chambers also contributed to this report.