Unveiled: 2014 Cadillac ELR

General Motors revealed the 2014 Cadillac ELR extended-range electric vehicle on Jan. 15 at the 2013 North American International Auto Show. The all-new coupe delivers “luxury, dramatic design and energy efficiency, creating a fun-to-drive” vehicle, according to Cadillac.

Mark Adams, executive director of Cadillac Global design, added that the ELR “further advances the expression of Cadillac design.”

The ELR, which initially debuted at the 2009 NAIAS as the Converj concept, has a sleek profile, a prominent, sculpted body side and a wide stance with 20-inch wheels. The headlamps, as well as all of the vehicle’s lighting, are LED. It also features a modernized version of the classic Cadillac grille and active shutters in the lower part of the grille to improve aerodynamics at higher speeds.

The interior of the ELR incorporates the first application of a new interior design theme that will define Cadillac’s next wave of vehicles. A four-passenger layout focuses on the driver and is set in a hand-wrapped, cut-and-sewn interior made with authentic, semi-aniline leather seats. The vehicle will also be connected with Cadillac CUE, which comes with Natural Voice Recognition, a touch screen, Bluetooth smartphone connectivity and available 3-D GPS navigation with Doppler weather reports.

The ELR offers a full driving range of over 300 miles. Typical daily commuting occurs emissions-free, but the range-extending engine generator powers the car seamlessly for long drives. The vehicle will also produce a powerful, instantaneous torque of 295 lb-ft from the electric motor, which is the same torque as a BMW M3.

The ELR will come with four selectable drive modes, including a Sport Mode with more aggressive throttle response, suspension settings and steering feel. Additionally, a new front suspension offers spirited handling and agility. Paddle shifters behind the steering wheel allow the driver to activate regenerative braking, meaning the driver can pulse the brakes by hand and enter into a corner with his or her foot ready to accelerate.

According to Bob Ferguson, vice president of Global Cadillac, the ELR will be manufactured in limited numbers at GM’s plant in Detroit. In addition to the U.S., the ELR will be exported only to the largest global luxury markets, including China and Europe.

“[ELR] is a special car that exemplifies Cadillac’s greatest achievements throughout history,” said Ferguson. “ELR signals Cadillac’s ongoing expansion as a brand that defines the best of technology and reaches a new generation of luxury buyers. Simply put, ELR is a revolutionary vehicle, a pivot point for Cadillac that will allow us to reestablish ourselves as a technological leader in the luxury space.”