If you’re going to be in the luxury game these days, you need to be talking EV.
So it goes that Cadillac chose the 2019 Detroit International Auto Show to reveal a future EV platform that takes some of the lessons learned from the likes of the Chevrolet Volt, Cadillac ELR, and Chevrolet Bolt, and applies them to a modular EV platform that sounds very much like what Volkswagen’s doing with their MEB platform.
“Cadillac will lead the corporation towards a zero emissions future by becoming GM’s lead electric brand,” said Steve Carlisle, president of Cadillac. “We can build CUVs, SUVs, and cars from one singular architecture.”
The heart of the new platform, the batteries, are arranged like ice cubes within the floor of the car. As many as you need – or as few – can be added. Carlisle also said that Cadillac will be the first GM brand to come to market with the new technology.
“It’s meant to be a highly versatile platform that can work with different powertrain options,” said Hoss Hassani, managing director of Cadillac Canada. “Front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive, all-wheel drive, and different body styles.” During their presentation, video showed two distinct vehicles: a Tesla Model X-esque SUV and a smaller, sportier compact sedan.
While there have been no concrete dates as to when we’ll start seeing production or near-production examples of the new EV platform, Cadillac does have an aggressive rollout strategy that they say will have a new car on the road every six months through 2021, and were hinting during the presentation that a vehicle – or vehicles – that will be using the platform could very well be a part of that rollout.
Hassani maintains that while that could be true, Cadillac will not rush and wants to make sure that what they offer is accessible.
“Bringing out a $110,000 or $120,000 vehicle is not our idea of transformation,” he said. “Cadillac, being a luxury brand, will be looking to introduce Cadillacs that are vehicles that are going to have a certain level of reach, and the heart of the market is not a $110,000 or $120,000 car that you can get five of, and that’s about it.”
The ideas are there; we’re just going to have to wait and see how this aggressive expansion into the EV world is going to play out. Either way, it appears the luxury landscape is going to continue to evolve at a fast rate as we hurtle towards 2021 and beyond.