Cadillac Boss: “Most” Of Our Lineup Will Get Plug-In Hybrid Versions

DEC 8 2015 BY MARK KANE 44

Cadillac ELR sales - October 2015

Cadillac ELR sales – October 2015

2016 Cadillac ELR

2016 Cadillac ELR

Most of the new Cadillac models will get plug-in hybrid versions, especially in China, according to Cadillac CEO Johan de Nysschen (which is a bit of an odd statement from a former? plug-in denouncer) :

“For us, the avenue to ensure that we are able to play in China is going to be through plug-in hybrids.”

In the U.S., an all-electric Cadillac (to compete with the Tesla Model S) isn’t expected. But Cadillac, as part of GM, doesn’t need to introduce such a model to comply with emissions regulations, and it seems it doesn’t want to (at least not in the short term).

“We think that those cars anyway offer the advantage that they effectively can be a full EV, but they are not subjected to the constraints of a still-immature charging infrastructure,” he said, adding that “most” of Cadillac’s lineup eventually will be offered with a plug-in hybrid powertrain.”

First, Cadillac will introduce the plug-in hybrid CT6 in China in the second half of 2016, with the model to follow in early 2017 for the United States.

The previous plug-in hybrid ELR model will not be continued. ELR peaked at around 200 sales a month, and over 1% share in Cadillac car sales in the U.S.

Cadillac CT6 Plug-In - Complete With 18.4 kWh Battery And 37 Miles Of Range

Cadillac CT6 Plug-In – Complete With 18.4 kWh Battery And 37 Miles Of Range

Source: Automotive News

Categories: Cadillac

Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply

44 Comments on "Cadillac Boss: “Most” Of Our Lineup Will Get Plug-In Hybrid Versions"

newest oldest most voted

Nobody makes a compelling EV by shoe-horning a hybrid EV drivetrain into a gasmobile. Compelling EVs are designed from the ground up.

One only needs to look at the poor sales of nearly all cars which are offered both as a straight gasmobile, and a HEV, to see this is true.

Of course, that’s a generality, and I know of one exception: The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV. However, that has a real-world EV driving range of only about 22 miles, so I’m not sure if that actually qualifies as a “compelling” EV, despite surprisingly good sales.


I meant: One only needs to look at the poor sales of nearly all hybrid cars, in models which are offered both as a straight gasmobile and as a HEV, to see this is true.

I wouldn’t look at poor sales to say car isn’t compelling. When it’s sold out, it will have poor sales, even when the demand is high (eg. SparkEV).

What is more likely is that companies who use gasmobile conversion do not push their EV model, hence poor sales. Those who made dedicated EV platform is all-in, so they push their cars, even if it’s not that good (ie, Leaf is slow in 0-60 and charging)

For example, SparkEV is quickest charging car in the world in percentage, and second quickest in power (behind Tesla). Yet you don’t hear this from Chevy.

It’s also 3rd quickest EV behind BMW i3 in 0-60. It’s compelling, but not selling due to lack of Chevy support and constantly sold out.

We can’t really judge how compelling a compliance car like the Spark or the RAV4 EV is, because compliance cars are not given a price which reflects their actual cost. Like the GM EV1, the price is set far below what the auto maker would need to sell it at, to actually make a profit, or even to break even.

Of course, what’s “compelling” and what isn’t is to some extent a matter of opinion, rather than fact. What I think is compelling in a plug-in EV, and what my gentle readers think is, may not entirely overlap.

I don’t think SparkEV is compliance car. It’s sold in Canada, Mexico, and South Korea. In case of Mexico, it’s selling for cheaper than in US. If it’s compliance car that’s losing money, there’s no reason for Chevy to sell in non-compliance areas and lose even more money. I describe more in my blog here

I agree that not everyone will agree on what constitutes “compelling”. But given some objective metrics, SparkEV (gas car conversion) does really well compared to dedicated EV platform (0-60, DCFC, cost, range).

The point I’m making is that gas car conversion doesn’t have to suck, but low sales due to idiots car makers not knowing what they have and not making it available.

All car are sold at a loss at first. Some just are not produced enough.
On Cadillac I can’t believe GM didn’t first have them do the Volt, Bolt giving them prestige, then use that prestige down market into Chevy.
That they are going Chevy up ignores marketing 101 and their own history.

A ground up design is certainly better, but you could argue that Ford has done pretty well selling the Energi line of vehicles. The difference is they are widely available and the sales people aren’t shamed if the sell one.

The Outlander PHEV may only have a 22 mile AER, but the utility it offers for the fuel consumption and price is unmatched in the market. It has been an outlier for years now. If Mitsubishi had a better reputation in the US (and actually offered it for sale), they could probably approach 6 figure sales numbers.

I don’t think you’re being fair to Cadillac – have you looked at the CT6? You could hardly call that shoe-horned – it’s got a very high capacity battery (by far the strongest PHEV in this segment) and it’s well-integrated into the platform.

No, I hadn’t looked at the Cadillac CT6 PHEV. But that shouldn’t be surprising, as it isn’t being sold yet.

So, what will the EPA rated range be? Price? Does it have a real back seat, unlike the Cadillac ELR? I’m guessing “yes” for the last question. But to know if it’s actually compelling, we’ll have to wait to see how it’s reviewed, and how Cadillac prices it. Hopefully they won’t make it almost ridiculously overpriced, as Cadillac initially did with the ELR.

And will Cadillac make it available in large numbers? Or, like too many other PHEV variants of gasmobiles (for example: Ford Focus Electric), will Cadillac only make a unit when one is specifically requested by a customer?

I certainly wouldn’t label any PEV “compelling” before it has been driven by retail customers.

The car looks good, but is primarily an ICE with a PHEV version. IIRC, the PHEV version will only be sold in China to start with. So it may be a year or two before we figure out if they want it to compete here in the US.

Like the Chevy Volt? The volt is based on the same platform as the Chevy Cruze and Buick Verano. The Volt is easily the best car on that platform.

There’s a lot more to a car than its powertrain. A quality car has to have a good chassis, suspension, interior, etc…

Johan has clearly not seen the potential in plug-in technology (still). It looks like compliance plays only for Caddy. Once Chevy has Volt and Bolt, there will no longer be any need for a US plug-in.

Totally OT: I wonder if Johan de Nysschen’s name will surface in the DieselGate investigation. He was at Audi until 2012?

Thursday comes VW again, as they’re to release more internal investigation results. Maybe then? De Nysschen was perhaps too far from Audi’s engineering, even if he shares their disdain for how regulations can cost $100 here, or $300 there.

De Nysschen is also about demonstrating Cadillac’s stand-alone financial performance, which interviews in the car mags continue to make plain. It’s remarkable how far the public has gone from understanding what guts make a car. If that’s where they want to be, to some extent capitalism exists to take full advantage. De Nysschen’s the guy. Pistons go up and down, but what a Cadillac looks like. That’s vital. At least the interiors hopefully improve.

Those overhead costs of moving the management team to NYC will probably not help the bottom line.

Guess he wanted a nice Manhattan condo.

I don’t think a car has to be a pure EV in order to compete with Tesla. A well-made PHEV could compete well. Trouble is, nobody has made one yet. Of course, I’m talking about something to compete with Model S or Model X. As for the Model-III…. Granted, I’m just speculating since i haven’t seen it, but I suspect the 2017 Chevy Volt will heavily compete with the Model-III. Of course, so will the Bolt.

Now, take the BMW i8. Granted, it would be more of a competitor for the Tesla Roadster, but I’d much rather have an i8. The only problem is the 15 miles EV range. If the i8 had 50-ish miles of EV range like the Volt, there would be no doubt which car would be best.

My point is… as soon as somebody makes a PHEV that is similar to a Tesla in style and performance, but has a PHEV drivetrain with a good amount of EV range (like 50 or better) I suspect it will compete well with the Model-S.

Concur completely. Many of the first batch of “affordable” EVs (BEVs and PHEVs) had serious compromises – at least from my point of view. The 2nd Gen Volt is a dramatically better car. Sounds like the 2nd Gen Leaf will be much better also. If you think of the Bolt as the 2nd gen Spark EV, I’d argue it is also dramatically better. I hope Ford has something up it’s sleeve to supercede it’s current crop – but we’ll see. Hyundai’s Ioniq sounds good – but few details.

They did.

It is just too expensive.

918, P1 and La Ferrari are all great examples of Tesla Roadster competitors that absolutely dominate the Roadster. But they all cost way too much compared with the Roadster.

No they did not. He asked for a AER of 50 miles. None of those supercars can drie for 50 miles electric only.

The Ferrari is more like 50 meter, the Porsche i don’t know (20km?) and the P1 should be below the Porsche regarding AER.

If it cost $900K to get 19 miles of range (918), what makes you think 50 miles won’t cost more than a million in those cases?

Does it matter if it is a good 50 miles AER at that point? The cost would be 7x the Tesla.

Interesting fact, the Model S has outsold five individual models Cadillac offers (all except the SRX and ATS) through November.

The list is:
Escalade ESV

And ATS is within a thousand units or so of Model S. Model S could pass it with the huge December that seems to be pending.

Here is the data I was using:

Shouldn’t the Esclade (18,487 sales) and Escalade ESV (12,775 sales) be counted together as two variations of one model? Also, next year, shouldn’t we be comparing Escalade sales to Model X sales?

Yes, ELR is junky slow so Model S should do better.

CTS is being redesigned and new CTS just got launched.

Escalades models are basically the same platform but breaking out is smaller. That is like breaking out 90D from 70D sales.

XTS is old and soon to be replaced.

SRX and ATS are both recently redesigned, thus sells better.

Good points (sven too).

I just skimmed the Caddy sales list and was surprised to see volumes on par with Model S. The Escalade was recently redesigned (very well) and gas is dirt cheap. I don’t think sales could go much higher. Combining the two versions probably makes sense, but I didn’t even know what the difference was. Why would Caddy break them out?

Probably taking the Model S + Model X sales of next year vs. the Escalade + (whatever the top of the line Caddy sedan is) is the best comparison.

I was just stunned to see that Tesla could catch them in volume with S, X, and 3.

Cadillac has been in a long steady decline since the 90s. It was the king in luxury few decades ago.

But due to its substandard cars in recent history, it is a long and steep hill to climb again.

The new SRX, ATS, CTS are showing promises. But luxury buyers care more than just “spec”. They want “cool factors”, distinguish status and “show off” factors… Cadillac lacks all 3 in today’s environment.

But it is doing one thing at at time. It is slowly re-establishing performance and interior quality. But re-establishing “coolness” and “show off” factors will take time.

Yeah, but Cadillac made money, and a lot of it per vehicle.

the ct6 is wonderful ,and it has a real battery.the price has drop and 2nd gen cars are on there way ,yes we wish it would happen faster.remenber 5 years ago how far we have come,see how far we will go in the next 10 years .

That is a good thing. But it might be too late for Cadillac anyway…

It is a damaged brand that is getting beaten on both ends. It got Lexus/Acura/Hyundai to lure in low end buyers. It got BMW/Audi/Mercedez/Jaguar to choke its high end buyers. Tesla got all the cool tech/new gadget/geek buyers… Not much demographics are left for Cadillac.

Geriatrics? Sorry Bill Howland. 😉

Sorry to break it to you, but young people in general, from what I have seen, like the car better than I do, and, I’m not the only ELR owner who posts here.

The car was a compromise purchase; I view it as my asset recovery program.

As far as the stream of time goes, all my life I have either been way too young or too old. It is however, somewhat disconcerting to see deaths of EV pioneers younger than myself. But I seem to remain much healthier than those who run to the doctor all the time. Never taking any medicine is probably also helpful, but then I’ve never considered myself drug-deficient.

I would buy the upcoming CT6 or CTS-V if I got the money.

But ELR is just too small for my growing family.

I would give Cadillac a look for sure, but I am in the minority. And that is a big problem for Cadillac.

I think Cadillac could define what Tesla wants to introduce as the Model 3. Mostly with their ability to pack lower cost in close to the same package. 30Kwh, a REx, some of the same Apple functionality, maybe?

The technology is more impressive than Tesla, mechanically. GM pioneers. But then de Nysschen doesn’t, does he?

What seems to be disconcerting is Caddy will go for months at a minimum with no EV offering. Although Chevy will have 2 or 3 in the interim.

I suspect their response, and the industry in general would produce more ev’s if crude was $100 again, and not $37.65/bbl.

When I go to the dealer for the free maintenance, I always let some one in authority know that If they want me to purchase another car from them it better be able to go at least the first 30 miles on juice.

Otherwise, I’m not interested in their other products (until they put a j1772 on them, of course).

great idea, this is the only way to convince dealers.

Beijing China has issued a RED ALERT due to high air pollution if ICE manufacturers want to sell cars to wealthy Chinese they better make more BEVs.

Most of that so called Smog are created by coal fired plants which are far dirtier than the version of coal plants in the US.

How does more BEV help with that?

1. By making cars approximately three times as energy-efficient. It’s pretty naive to believe the EV-bashing FUD that this somehow, magically, will not reduce overall lifecycle pollution and CO2 output, even if they were 100% coal powered… and they’re not, even in China.

2. By allowing them to be charged by power generated by power plants located outside large cities, which are the only areas in China with sufficient air pollution to constitute a high level health hazard. I don’t know what percentage of China’s coal-fired plants are located in rural areas, but hopefully at least some of them are.

EVs are 3x more efficient than ICE cars but coal plants are only about 30% efficient so it pretty much balances out. Coal plants tend to put more other nasties into the air, though, so a coal-powered EV is generally a bit worse for the environment than an ICE.

Most grids use a mix of coal and friendlier sources, making the EV better. And the mix improves over time, so an EV you buy today will improve over its 15 year life while an ICE will pollute more as it ages.

Putting a plug on these cars will just cause the J1772 charging stations to be blocked so EVs that need them can’t use them. Just like the PiP, but more expensive.

If you are depending on J1772s to get you home, you already bought the wrong car.

DCFC is the way to go.

Ponder this Ed:

Over 1.5 Billion 110V/ 120V AC Outlets, North America, All EV’s, PHEV’s and Electric Fueled Vehcile’s Refuel This Way.
Nails 100% Electric Daily Range For 74% U.S. Drivers!
Work Place Charging as a Corporate perk, on the 110V/ 120V AC all day for pennies an hour can effectively double the range of the average Electric Fueled Vehicle for longer commutes.
Opportunity Refueling and Destination Charging throughout the day and night can increase gas/petrol/diesel free driving by a factor of 4.
Add to this mix over 38,000 L2 and DC Fast EV Filling Stations in North America, of which as states, 63% FREE, as Loyalty and Retention Perks.


Thomas J. Thias

I am the Chevy Volt EREV and Used Electric Fueled Vehicle Salesman-



He is still waiting for the EV fairies to magically install DCFC stations around the world. Only Tesla understands that they go hand in hand.

It would be nice to see Cadillac take a risk now and then.

Whatever they said,I wanna take to XT5 2017SUV.So exciting to see that XT5.It’s modified SRX right?Amazing mid suv in 2017.