by Tony West
There are a number of plug in electric and hybrid vehicles proving worthy in the market. Low end of the lower-priced plug in models there’s the Toyota Prius, a little higher, the Chevy Volt- the premium end the Tesla Model S. Now the standard luxury and technology Cadillac is known for is paired with cutting-edge electric technology. The 2014 Cadillac ELR stands to be a huge contender.
The 2014 Cadillac ELR was one of the most anticipated debuts at the Chicago Auto Show last week. An incarnation of the 2009 Converj Concept, the Cadillac ELR has sex appeal, innovative tech, and efficiency. Extended Range Electric Vehicle (EREV) technology provides a driving range of 300 miles. EREV tech enhanced by Regan on Demand allows for the 1.4L gas powered electric generator to be recharged with momentum in transit! The 16.5Kwh lithium battery can be charged with a 120V home outlet or with a 240V charging station. It would take about 4 ½ hours to charge the ELR fully with a 240V charging station. Drivers can put the ELR in hold mode to save battery power.
The ELR carries all the bells and whistles of standard Cadillac models. The inspiring CUE system allows for maximum control and connectivity. The CUE system is central to the luxury experience, and the electric CUE system provides efficiency info and charging schedules, usage, and a variety of infotainment.
The design of the Cadillac ELR is similar to the Cadillac ATS, with the ELR being a slightly smaller coupe. With the Cadillac ELR being a much lighter vehicle aerodynamics play a key role. Active shutters behind the flush front grille help air move around the car. And a sharp spoiler also helps to manage airflow. Also reducing drag is the rake on the windshield and back glass. The Cadillac ELR also comes with LED headlamps daytime running lamps and tail lamps, and LED powered lights on the instrument panel and doors.
The tranquil electric ride in the Cadillac ELR can be thrilling. With 295 lb-ft of torque and a 0-60 time of 8 seconds the Cadillac ELR is just as fast as its counterparts. In addition to HiPer Strut suspension and electric power ZF steering, the ELR has low rolling resistance tires and continuous damping control that adjust damping every 2 milliseconds for optimal control and agility. The Cadillac ELR also has an electro hydraulic braking system, StabiliTrack, and safety features like the Safety Alert Seat, Lane Departure Warning, and Forward Collision Alert.
The interior of the 2014 Cadillac ELR is a spacious leather-trimmed cabin. It’s luxury as expected from Cadillac-blending chrome and wood accents and carbon fiber trim. The interior also features an 8” configurable instrument panel and an 8” information display. The gesture recognition touch screen controls the navigation, media, entertainment, and the Bose sound system. Some of the same controls are accessible from the steering wheel. The ELR also has folding rear seats.
The Cadillac ELR’s battery is covered by an 8-year/100,000 mile warranty. The ELR stands to rival, or take the lead affront a handful of luxury electric and hybrid vehicles on the market from Lexus to Chevy and dare I say Tesla. It’s already been a big hit at this season’s auto shows. The Cadillac will go on sale in early 2014.