NAIAS 2013 Preview: Electric 2014 Cadillac ELR

During the week leading up to the 2013 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, The Driving Life will focus on the big news to expect from automakers, including vehicle launches and model updates.

The extended-range electric 2014 Cadillac ELR will arguably be the most anticipated reveal for GM in Detroit. The plug-in hybrid sports car made its initial debut four years ago at the 2009 NAIAS as the Cadillac Converj. It was initially set for a 2011 or 2012 model year debut, but it is finally ready to go after delays in development.

“The ELR will be in a class by itself, further proof of our commitment to electric vehicles and advanced technology,” General Motors North America President Mark Reuss said in a keynote address at the SAE Convergence Conference in Detroit. “People will instantly recognize it as a Cadillac by its distinctive, signature look and true-to-concept exterior design.”

The ELR will feature an electric propulsion system made up of a T-shaped lithium-ion battery, an electric drive unit and a four-cylinder engine-generator. It will use electricity as its primary power source to drive the car without using gasoline or producing tailpipe emissions. When the battery’s energy is low, the ELR switches to a gasoline-powered electric generator to allow hundreds of additional driving miles.

Production is scheduled to begin on the ELR in late 2013 at GM’s Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly plant, alongside fellow extended-range electric vehicles, the Chevrolet Volt, Opel Ampera and Holden Volt. Detroit-Hamtramck is the only U.S. automotive manufacturing plant that mass produces extended-range electric vehicles, which are exported to 21 countries from the plant.

Follow The Driving Life for exclusive, live coverage of NAIAS 2013 beginning Monday, Jan. 14.

[Source: General Motors]