Consumer Reports Staffer: Cadillac ELR is a “$75,000 Version of the Chevrolet Cruze”


At $75,000, Consumer Reports Thinks the ELR is Way Too Expensive

At $75,000, Consumer Reports Thinks the ELR is Way Too Expensive

When Cadillac set the base MSRP for its upcoming ELR plug-in at $75,995 we were more than a little surprised at the price; and the media frenzy over the sticker price began.

Cadillac ELR Oozes Luxury on the Inside, But is it Worth $75,000?

Cadillac ELR Oozes Luxury on the Inside, But is it Worth $75,000?

There were some sites who stated that the ELR was nothing more than a fancy, overpriced Chevy Volt.  There were other sites who claimed that, at $75,995, Cadillac wouldn’t sell more than a few ELRs when the Tesla Model S could be had for the same money.

Now, Consumers Reports is chiming in and it’s saying the ELR is vaslty overpriced.  Below are a few excerpts form the Consumer Reports article:

“That’s $40,000 more than a Volt! And for that kind of scratch, you could buy a car in a whole different league, like an Audi A7 TDI or Tesla Model S. That leaves us wondering, who will buy this car?”

“But, ultimately, driving the ELR feels rather ordinary. It lacks the zip one might expect from a high-priced coupe. Being a rolling sculpture, visibility is very limited.”

“Still, as nice as the ELR is, we couldn’t escape the feeling driving it around that for this kind of money, we’d a lot rather be piloting a Tesla, which is a lot quicker, sportier, and roomier, and gives you a whole lot more electric range.”

With the ELR, Are You Paying Only For the Badge?

With the ELR, Are You Paying Only For the Badge?

But wait…it gets worse:

“One staff member dismissed the ELR as a $75,000 version of the Chevrolet Cruze (on which the Volt and the ELR are, indeed, based). Ouch!”

The ELR is indeed pricy, but being that it’s an extremely limited production vehicle, and that it does have some slightly better performance specs, as well as many more interior refinements over its sister Chevy Volt, we’d wager that Cadillac will have no problem selling the couple thousand total examples GM makes.

Source: Consumer Reports

Category: Cadillac

Tags: , ,

31 responses to "Consumer Reports Staffer: Cadillac ELR is a “$75,000 Version of the Chevrolet Cruze”"
  1. Jouni Valkonen says:

    I think that ELR is a statement from GM that ‘we cannot make nor we want to make a compelling EV’. It is so sad how aggressively big car makers are avoiding to make a compelling EV that would blow ICE cars out of existence. In premium car category compelling EV is perfectly feasible although it is impossible to do a compelling compact car with electric drivetrain.

  2. Bloggin says:

    True…..the ELR should have been a 200 EV mile plug-in hybrid to justify the $75k price. But it seems Cadillac wanted to ‘say’ they had a halo car, without actually making one.

    Maybe Barra’s first move will be to drop the ELR price to a more realistic/expected $50k, and request Cadillac actually produce a real ‘halo’ car for the brand.

  3. Rick Danger says:


    Whew! Nothing like a good hard laugh 1st thing in the morning 🙂

  4. David Murray says:

    I don’t expect Cadillac to sell many at that price.. I hope they prove me wrong.

    1. vdiv says:

      Cadillac does not expect to sell many at that price, so they won’t.

  5. taser54 says:

    CR staffer made a very unprofessional comment as we all know the statement is not true.

  6. ClarksonCote says:

    Saying the ELR and Volt are “based” off the Cruze is naive and ignorant. The ELR is no more based off the Cruze than the Escalade is based off the Suburban.


    1. Aaron says:

      You forgot the “/sarcasm” tag in your post. I hope you know why…

      1. ClarksonCote says:

        Well, yes, but the point being, “What vehicle is not based off another?” Being based on something and being an expensive version of something are two entirely different things that the CR employee shouldn’t liken so quickly.

        1. ClarksonCote says:

          Also, the Volt ELR comparison is way more synonymous to Suburban Escalade than Cruze ELR

    2. Brian says:

      So in other words, you’d be right?

  7. Aaron says:

    Cimarron II, by Cadillac.

  8. scottf200 says:

    Eric, clearly many of your articles are slanted based on the way you write them. You would repeat the drivel about the comparison to the Cruze. So if Nissan came up with a high end car based on the LEAF it would be compared to the Versa and you’d print that nonsense. Pitiful.

    “Don’t get us wrong, it’s a lot nicer to drive than a Volt. You can barely hear the gas engine when it comes on. The steering is tight and responsive, although saying it’s as agile as the new CTS would be wrong. The interior is beautifully finished and sumptuous. Even Cadillac’s dreaded CUE infotainment system is less frustrating and more predictable than the sea of jumbled flat-surface touch buttons in the Volt, and the graphics are slick.”

    1. Aaron says:

      The Versa is based on a different chassis than the LEAF. That’s the difference.

      1. ClarksonCote says:

        So if a car is identical in every way but the chassis, they’re dissimilar. But if the car is different in every way except the chassis, they’re too similar.

        The Volt is nothing like the Cruze, I’ve driven many models of both types and I can state that with confidence. Comfort, features, acceleration, drivetrain, it’s all different.

  9. realdb2 says:

    Price is not the number one buying factor for Cadillac’s target market. Most people would not consider buying the ELR at the price they are asking. But they are not asking most people to buy it and they are not forecasting huge numbers. Why is this such a shock??

    1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

      There’s smart rich people (who tend to have earned their wealth themselves through hard work and successful risk taking), and there’s dumb rich people (who tend to inherit their wealth or come to it by lucky circumstance). The ELR is a car for dumb rich people who want a pretty bauble. No smart rich person is going to pay $75k for a $55k car, by definition.

      1. Jay Cole says:

        “…this isn’t a parachute, it’s a backpack!”

        /couldn’t resist

      2. ClarksonCote says:

        Kenneth, tell that to everyone who owns an Escalade.

      3. George Parrott says:


    2. Koz says:

      Price is too high and numbers are too few. It does not advance EV’s and, personally, I see little halo value for Cadillac in it. Not my company and not my money but it appears to be a foolish move to me just as the initial price of the Volt being above $37,400. That has proven to be a mistake and we will see shortly if the ELR pricing is a mistake.

      Actually, Volt pricing has between a mistake twice over. Firstly, the extra revenue generated on vehicles by setting the initial price at $41+K has been minuscule. A rounding error in the cost of developing, building, and marketing Volts. Secondly, lowering the price all the way to just under $35k was a mistake too. I expect most will disagree and I understand the Internet searching benefit of being below $35k. Allow me to explain. GM only have a handful of dealers actually spending effort selling Volts. Those dealers have been very successful. Dealer acceptance has been as much or more of a hindrance to the Volt’s sales then anything else. Pricing at $37,400 from the start would kept the after federal tax incentive price tipo below $30k. Keeping it there keeps residual values more consistant and ultimately higher than starting the pricing high and lowering below this level. More importantly keeping it $37,400 for 2014 would allow GM to offer more dealer incentives to entice them to actually expend effort selling Volts. It’s all pretty moot since GM isn’t building enough Volts for sales to increase as reflected in dealer inventory. Not sure what the point of lowering the pricing so much if they won’t build the cars. Maybe they have a lower cost on cells produced in Michigan vs cells coming from Korea so they were dragging their feet until this production started. Seems strange that the battery contract would be structured this way but this is the only reasoning for the low Volt production that I have heard that makes sense.

      As far as the ELR, I just don’t see many people being enticed into the showrooms or otherwise to look at other Cadillacs for purchase because of the ELR. I don’t think having the tech as presented in the current iteration of Voltec advancing the brand much except to EV enthusiasts but these buyers would only be interested in the ELR and Cadilac in general. Time will tell but IMO the extreme high pricing will minimize sales and whatever Halo affect Cadillac might have gotten.

      Both pricing decisions smack of myopic accounting based decisions with little or poor marketing, sales, or long term vision reasoning.

  10. GM Volt Lover says:

    I heard it cost GM $50000 to make the Chevy volt (material cost, labor, marketing, annual development cost divided by the sales number, the ELR cost maybe $15000 higher due to small volume), that is why they price the ELR so high, if GM can produce ELR for under $50,000, they will NOT be stupid to price it at $76,000 because the small profit (say they sell 5,000 per year, that is $130million, which I seriously doubt they can sell even 2,000) can’t negate the hugely embarassing bad PR

  11. Lou Grinzo says:

    Between compliance cars and things like the ELR, I’m beginning to think that the few companies going all-in on electrification are going to make a killing as the market matures and battery prices continue to decline.

  12. James says:

    I wish the ELR luck, but it’s definitely not on my list. I would stretch our finances to buy a Tesla, but I wouldn’t even think about spending that much money for a CaddiVolt. I like our Volt okay, but only as a $300/mo lease, and once the lease is up I will either buy a BMW i or a Tesla E.

  13. Future EV Driver says:

    Will make a nice collector car but really nothing more, selling in the hundreds!

    But if not hearing the gas engine comment above holds true for Volt 2.0 then the ELR development was more than worth it!!

    GM, please add ELR engine noise reduction to Volt 2.0 !!! Thank you!

  14. pjwood says:

    Maybe this all says what a screaming deal the Volt is? It has a better coupe driving position than the Tesla, too.

  15. Loboc says:

    You can compare a thumb drive to an SSD, but, should you? They both do basically the same thing. Entirely different class of use though.

    I happen to think the ELR is priced correctly.

  16. ModernMarvelFan says:

    Does CR ever make the claim that Lexus RX350 is nothing more than a fancy Camry with higher roof? They share the same “platform”.

    I think most auto reviewer has pushed the definition of “platform” too far on some scales….

    How many parts do it share before you call it the “same” car? Is LEAF an electric Versa?

  17. Mercedes-Benz says:

    never been a fan of cadillac, never liked the styling of the cars

  18. Martin T. says:

    GM exercises in limited sales.