Thursday, February 13, 2014


Introducing the all new 2014 ELR. With its forward-thinking technology and forward-leaning design, ELR is an original thought in a sea of conformity and our most advanced luxury coupe ever. 

The Cadillac ELR is a luxury plug-in hybrid compact coupé developed and manufactured by General Motors. The ELR powertrain is a re-tuned version of the propulsion system used in the Chevrolet Volt. The ELR's 16.5 kWh lithium-ion battery pack delivers an all-electric range of about 35 miles (56 km) and a top speed of 100 mph (160 km/h). Deliveries to retail customers in the United States and Canada began in December 2013.

2014 Cadillac ELR Our 6-foot-2-inch tester reports no misgivings with the driving position, and he hardly notices the 0.9-inch loss of front headroom that comes with the swoopy styling. But the backseat has become largely ceremonial. The rear cabin is 4 inches narrower at the shoulders, 2.6 inches tighter at the hips and there's 1.3 inches less rear headroom compared to the less-than-spacious Volt.

How Does It Drive in Pure Electric Mode?
The coddling continues as the ELR gets under way. Here the smooth power delivery of the largely carryover Voltec drivetrain in silent-running battery mode is a perfect match for the well-sealed cabin of the ELR. Triple-sealed doors, an acoustic windshield and thicker-than-Volt front side glass help to keep wind and road noise in check. A wee bit of faint keening comes through when the regenerative braking system is active, it like song welcome to electric ave then get hire .  

Lay onto the throttle in EV mode and the ELR will scoot to 60 mph in an estimated 8.8 seconds. That's not sport coupe territory, but it is about a half-second faster than the last Volt we tested despite 269 extra pounds of  heavy metal mix  rock and roll Cadillac.

How is this possible? Cadillac engineers have conjured up some software tricks to get 157 horsepower (117 kW) out of the primary traction motor instead of the 149 horses (111 kW) it produces in the Volt. The instant-on torque characteristic of electric motors now makes 295 pound-feet of the stuff available the instant you crack the throttle, up from 268 lb-ft.

They've also figured out how to extract a higher percentage of the energy stored in the 16.5 kWh lithium-ion battery. They won't say how much, but the 240-volt recharge time has increased from four to five hours as a result of the deeper energy withdrawal. This gives the 2014 Cadillac ELR an estimated electric range of 37 miles, just one less than the 2013 Chevy Volt despite the higher torque, extra weight and wider 245/40R20 tires.

Breathtaking Price, yet Not Breathtaking To Drive
As it sits, our test sample is breathing down the neck of $80,000 on the strength of two options: the $1,695 Luxury package and the $1,995 Adaptive Cruise package. The two remaining options we lacked were special tintcoat red paint for $995 and a Kona package with 20-way-adjustable glove leather seats for another $2,450.

Sure, the engine coarseness in extended range won't bother you much if your sphere of operation keeps you within the EV range. Volt owners do it all the time. But this car costs twice as much. The beauty of a plug-in hybrid is you can drive it anywhere, but if you fork over this much you want to enjoy yourself every mile. The 2014 Cadillac ELR seems to shed half its price and sophistication when the motor kicks in.

And at the end of the day it's not that quick, not that engaging to drive. Cadillac would like us to think of the ELR as a 6 Series or Tesla Model S competitor instead of a hyper-expensive Volt, but that's how it drives, for the most part. The 2014 Cadillac ELR is stunningly beautiful  heavy metal  can roll 

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