Taking its dramatically styled Cadillac Converj Concept to the next level, GM’s luxury division has announced formal plans to bring the extended-range electric vehicle from the show floor to the showroom as the Cadillac ELR. While providing no specific details regarding the car’s on-sale date, pricing or performance, it did say this 2+2 grand touring coupe will use a version of the sophisticated Voltec E-REV powertrain originally developed for the Chevrolet Volt. Like the Converj, the volume-build ELR will be fitted with an electric drive unit powered by a centrally mounted T-shaped lithium-ion battery pack that can be supplemented by energy created on the fly using a four-cylinder gasoline engine-generator.
Cadillac says the "ELR" nomenclature was chosen both to indicate the car’s electric propulsion system and to keep it appropriately integrated with the division’s current practice of using three-letter model designations. An acknowledged superstar of the 2009 Detroit Auto Show, the Cadillac Converj Concept has remained the subject of speculation ever since. "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."