[ad#post_ad]The Cadillac Converj was a stunning extended range concept car GM first unveiled an the January 2009 Detroit Auto Show. The luxurious stylish vehicle was to utilize the same Voltec propulsion system as the Volt though specifically tuned for increased performance and luxury.
GM vice chairman Bob Lutz has long been a proponent for the car whose pricetag and market segment was purported to be better able to absorb the added cost of the electrified drivetrain.
Bloomberg reported that the program has been cancelled specifcally so the company can focus on bringing out lower cost plugin parallel hybrids for the Cadillac brand.
Apparently GM's internal research concluded that GM could not produce the Converj with sufficient features and performance to be compelling enough to buyers at the same time producing a profit. This information was obtained from two GM executives who asked not to be identified.
To have made the Converj perform as intended, faster and smoother with heavier seats and larger wheels, its range would have been halved to 20 miles, while at the same time increasing its price by $30,000.
The decision to kill the Converj was made at a late January meeting even though earlier in that month Lutz had said the car was cleared for production.
"As we took a look at our available capital and engineering resources, we decided that there were things that were more urgent than doing a Cadillac version of the Voltec architecture," Bob Lutz told Reuters. "We had originally had a time slot for the Converj and that has been put on hold."
GM still plans to electrify Cadillacs, only relying on lower electric range plugin parallel hybrid technology, like the plugin 2-mode drivetrain recently previewed in the XTS concept.
According to analyst Eric Noble, president of CarLab, an automotive consultant, GM's decision to kill the Converj is “a tacit admission from GM that they over-batteried the Volt.”
“The future lies in plug-in hybrids with smaller electric range,” he said.
Voltec/EREV now seems dead to the Cadillac brand, at least using today's lithium ion batteries. Does it also speak to the Volt possibly becoming a one-off model?
Source ( Bloomberg ) and ( Reuters )