Automakers, please note: The future of electric cars doesn’t include $76,000 luxury vehicles that look fast but go slow.
That seems like common sense, right?
A Cadillac that looks like the one pictured here should wrap its occupants in opulence while also delivering tooth-rattling performance.
This is the Cadillac ELR, though, a vehicle that brought everything to the table except performance. Like the 2005 Ford Thunderbird, this Caddy has failed to find a long-term home because it didn’t deliver on the promises made by its seductive design.
Production of the ELR has come to an abrupt end after just two years on the market.
The ELR began as the Cadillac Converj concept and debuted at the 2009 Detroit auto show with an angular body line that Car and Driver fell in love with. Their article said,
On the Converj, the line defines the rear quarter, which resembles nothing so much as the hind corner of a Lamborghini Gallardo, a comparison that carries over to the concept’s overall profile. The wheels are 21 inches up front and 22 inches in the rear, and are hooked to a suspension featuring GM’s Magnetic Ride Control adjustable shocks.
The Converj held a lot of promise but also one very large drawback: It shared a powertrain with the Chevy Volt. When the car debuted in production form as the 2014 ELR, it carried an entry price of nearly $76,000 but had the Volt’s lethargic 181-hp and a 0-60 time of about 8 seconds.
For the 2016 model year, GM upgraded the powertrain to offer 233 hp and even slashed the price by $10,000, but it still wasn’t enough to convince buyers to drive one home.
An automaker can’t expect to sell a car that looks like a Lamborghini and drives like a Volt. General Motors learned that lesson the hard way.
While the ELR has failed, GM does expect to find success with the lower-priced and more appealing Chevy Bolt. The sub-$40,000 all-electric vehicle will feature a 200-mile range and be available for purchase later this year.
How do you want your electric car: fast and sleek, or practical and affordable?