Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Is Cadillac working on an ELR-V? [w/video]

Cadillac ELR-V: Spy Shots

Could it be? Could Cadillac be working on an even higher-end version of its ELR plug-in hybrid? Well, General Motors' Executive Vice President Mark Reuss has gone on record as... well, not saying much. The exec was more than a bit coy on video (which you can view below) when asked about the idea of an ELR-V, although he did say that Cadillac was looking at "expanding the tuning envelope" for its plug-in coupe. What that means could be hinted at in these spy photos.

Cadillac is certainly up to something with this little red ELR. As is often the case, it's the car's enhanced brakes that give it away. Bigger binders are a telltale sign of sportier aspirations, and it's safe to say that rule applies with the ELR. The larger rotors and four-piston Brembo calipers are sourced from the Buick Regal GS, which we imagine would be plenty to bring the high-priced hybrid to a halt.

Obscuring those rotors and calipers are larger, double-armed five-spoke wheels. And, according to our spies, hiding behind that camouflage is a new grille. Outside of those two items, though, there's not much aesthetic change.

Perhaps the biggest hint that Cadillac is looking at a more potent ELR is the vehicle this car was being tested with - a Tesla Model S. The poster-child for the EV movement is a known performer, so it'd make sense that Cadillac is benchmarking this car against it.

Despite these bits of evidence, though, we're still far from convinced. Building an ELR-V seems to go against everything Cadillac is trying to do with both the ELR and the V range. Instead, we're betting this will become a VSport, following in the footsteps of the new CTS VSport.

That could explain the new brakes as well as the aesthetic changes, but not necessarily the Model S being tested alongside it - we suppose it's possible that GM could add a bit of grunt to the ELR's powertrain.

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