Cadillac is certainly giving us mixed signals about the ELR. Last week, the plug-in was reportedly on the axing block due to slow sales. But Wednesday General Motors rolled out a 2016 model with more than a few surprises. Not only is it slashing the price by more than $9,000. It’s also making a bunch of improvements, including boosting power by 25 percent.
The 2016 ELR is now being quoted at $58,495, but note that’s after U.S. federal tax incentives. Without these incentives it’s priced around $65,995. That’s a serious reduction from last years model that was priced at $75,000.
The number $75K should ring a bell, since that’s the price bracket of the top ranking Tesla Model S. No wonder Cadillac has had difficulty getting the ELR off lots when it is up against such a modern icon of successful electric-hybrid technology. GM is hoping that the new price drop, along with added updates, to the ELR 2016 model will make it more appealing to drivers. It had to something right, after selling only 1,310 ELRs last year and only 311 in the first three months of this year.
So just what are the added goodies in the new package? Well, it’s equipping the 2016 ELR with tons of overhauls to make it more desirable to drivers. Major product upgrades include a more than 25 percent boost in power and torque, faster acceleration that improves 0-60 mph by 1.5 seconds, higher top speed, retuned chassis and steering for better handling, more responsive brakes along with a new Performance equipment package.
“ELR’s combination of leading technology with stunningly attractive design is unlike any other coupe in the luxury segment,” said Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen. “The upgraded ELR offers enhanced driving performance for buyers seeking uncompromising luxury and exquisite craftsmanship with electrification technology. It is unique in the luxury category, in that it completely eliminates conventional concerns over driving range, which has been the Achilles’ heel of other competitors in the luxury segment.”
Once optional safety upgrades are now standard, like the Driver Assistance active safety systems, which include side blind zone alert, rear cross traffic alert and Intellibeam headlamps. Lane change alert and a new vehicle security system are also standard. Adaptive cruise control is available.
Also look for OnStar with 4G LTE and standard built-in Wi-Fi hotspot provides a mobile hub for drivers and passengers to stay connected. Plus, there is also a new magnetic inductive charge spot on the instrument panel so drivers can charge their enabled phones wirelessly.