Jan 31

GM Considering 4-Door Cadillac Converj for 2013

 

The Cadillac Converj was a particularly beautiful concept car revealed by GM at the Detroit Auto Show. The vehicle is a 2 door 4 seater luxury model that uses the Voltec range-extended electric drivetrain with some tweaks to improve driving performance.

It also has a remarkable futuristic interior involving a massive OLED touch screen center stack/console interface, and featuring widescreen screen video camera displays instead of side view mirrors

MotorTrend has reported that GM executives are considering producing a 4-door version of the car. As well a release date of 2013 has been targeted. It was said that the rear doors wouldn’t disrupt the rakish roofline and likely have hidden handles, aspiring to a “four-door coupe” look.

The argument is 2 door cars look “fashionable” and may sell well in their first year, but see sales erode quickly over the next years as practicality takes over from lust.

Of course there’s a lot of financial uncertainty between now and then. GM vice-chair Bob Lutz told me in an exclusive interview that he really wants to produce the car, and that it would retail for the price of “two Volts.” Design executives said they were aiming to build a car that should retail for about $60,000 when creating the Converj.

Lutz also said that there was already a production clay model of the car that could go into wind tunnel testing, but cautioned that the Converj couldn’t be built unless the government considered it as a qualifying product for advanced technology loans.

Source (Motor Trend )

Cadillac Converj DSC00390 2009 Cadillac Converj Concept Computer Generated Image 2009 Cadillac Converj Concept Computer Generated Image 2009 Cadillac Converj Concept Computer Generated Image

This entry was posted on Saturday, January 31st, 2009 at 9:15 am and is filed under Converj, Design, Voltec. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COMMENTS: 52


  1. 1
    beachliving

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (9:23 am)

    Will they just focus on putting one of these together. The more they spend worrying about other models and next generations the less money going into building the plant they keep putting off. I mean I know they need to sell cars, but if money is tight why not focus on a car that so many people want already.

    Oh ya first again. It loses it’s thrill.. I need to find other things to look at..:)

    Start making Volts gas will go back up and then get opinions on what the people like or don’t like..


  2. 2
    RB

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (9:45 am)

    It is very attractive. I wish the Volt could have looked like this.


  3. 3
    fred

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (9:55 am)

    Who cares. I want a pedestrian vehicle at a pedestrian price so i can stop using oil for my daily commute.


  4. 4
    Alvin

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (9:55 am)

    This is the letter I sent the boys a GM:

    Dear Rick, Bob, and the GM board of Directors,

    I am 51 year old male empty nesters. I make over $100k per year. My first vehicle was a 72 Chevy pickup. Six of my last 8 vehicles have been GM products, i.e., 3 Chevys, 2 Cadillacs, and Buick; I even my bought my daughter a new Chevy for college. I can truly say I am and others like me are your loyal customers and therefore your boss, not the nuts on Capitol Hill.

    I was truly excited then disappointed, when the production version of the Chevy Volt didn’t live up the concept design, which was stellar. It was to be my new dream car vs. the Corvette (I still want and will buy one). However, I was pleased that you guys decided to build it, even though you threw away its cool points (styling).

    Now here you go again with the “Cadillac Converj” I love this concept. It has everything, beauty, luxury, eco-friendly and perfect for my daily commute of less than 20 miles round trip to work. Not to mention it’s a heck of a status symbol, because it a Cadillac! If you don’t want to be back on Capitol Hill again begging for a bailout, build this car and make Voltech propulsion the core drive train of your fleet for passenger vehicles! 274 lbs of instant torque is better that most cars on the road today except sport sedans and sport cars. If you build them we will buy them!

    Loyal GM Customer

    PS: And don’t let eggheads for a few mpg kill a great design. i.e., Volt concept! What a lame reason, you had 30k plus on a waiting list wanting to buy it based on the concept! Dude that’s over a billion dollars in sales revenue! Don’t rethink success!


  5. 5
    JEC

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (10:12 am)

    Bob says: “Lutz also said that there was already a production clay model of the car that could go into wind tunnel testing,”
    ————————————————————————————-
    But he forgot to finish the sentence, with reality

    “…then we will tweak that front-end to make it slightly more aero, then get rid of those BIG tires, raise that skirt a little, modify the raking angle of that windshield….and pretty much make it look like the current Volt.”

    Anyone can make a car “look” cool. Just take a peak at the Hot Wheels aisle at your local toy store. Hot Wheels make awsome looking, cool cars, so why not just steal Hot Wheels design, for your proto-types, then you can econo-size it after hooking your audience?


  6. 6
    TED in Fort Myers

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (10:21 am)

    I will never be able to afford a Cadillac. It will be a stretch to buy a Volt at $40,000.00 with a $10,000.00 tax incentive. But GM that is what I want unless you are still talking BEV Volt with a 100 miles of range then that is my choice. Bring on the first Volts I want one bad.
    Take Care,
    TED


  7. 7
    redeye

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (10:34 am)

    GM, I hope you survive this recession/depression we’re in.

    Hard to sell cars to the “masses” when the “masses” are out of a job and retirements are down 50%.

    Hard to build cars if all your vendors are out of business. Cars without wheels or interiors won’t sell.

    Good luck !


  8. 8
    nasaman

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (10:47 am)

    The Converj is stylist’s dream! Hopefully, GM will learn from its experience with the Volt concept and keep this Caddy concept’s sensual design in tact by avoiding any changes to reduce its cost or tweek its aerodynamics. If they do, a production 4-door Converj should easily surpass the success of the present CTS and easily command their target price of $60,000!

    (However, if GM will do the same with last year’s gorgeous Provoq concept as an E-REV crossover, I would expect it to be even more successful than the Converj sedan and easily sell in surprisingly large numbers for $75,000!)


  9. 9
    Tagamet

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (10:57 am)

    Independence Day 2010.
    The first Volt’s hit dealer’s lots.
    Fearing the eventual loss of the USA’s fiscal resources, OPEC drains
    the USA of all psychiatric resources.
    Sheik Therapy now Chic.
    Be well,
    Tag

    LJGTVWOTR!! NPNS


  10. 10
    nasaman

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (11:01 am)

    Well at least you “had a good run” as a shrink before the sheiks take over, right Tag? :)


  11. 11
    swrap

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (11:28 am)

    Nothing here that a little industrial shrink wrap wouldn’t fix. That way the original design is “settled” and no one gets in or out. Trouble is, with government becoming the final arbiter – they settle cheap. Look for cardboard interiors, plastic trim and Earl Scheib paint (no offense Earl).

    What’s quality or craft when you can get it all on the cheap?

    PS: rumors of standard issue jumpsuits for all GM workers appear true. Next comes the morning anthem sing.


  12. 12
    Jim I

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (11:30 am)

    We won’t need the shrinks or the sheiks, if the Volt, Converj, and Provoq are available for sale!!!!!!

    We will all be having too much fun driving our E-REVs!

    NPNS

    Go FM – Go GM-Volt Team!!!


  13. 13
    kent beuchert

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (11:35 am)

    Perhaps GM will adopt the Fisker technique of allowing the driver to
    switch to “hi-po” performance, which would turn on the range extender and use both its and the battery pack’s energy (when required during acceleration) combiined to power a hi-po electric motor. It’s one simple way to get performance, and if your trip is going to exhaust the battery pack anyway, why not go in style – it wouldn’t have any effect on electric driving range or the gasoline that’s avoided.


  14. 14
    Guy Incognito

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (11:40 am)

    Are we talking about the Generation 1 Cadillac Converj or Generation 2?
    Or is this the highly anticipated as yet unseen Generation 3?

    GM, you don’t even have a Plug-In Hybrid for the masses (the Volt) yet.
    Why are you diverting resources & time to a luxury high-end model?

    I certainly hope your not using the money you received from the taxpayers as R&D for this project.
    I can think of many ways that money can be better spent than on vaporware.


  15. 15
    statik

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (11:43 am)

    “MotorTrend has reported that GM executives are considering producing a 4-door version of the car.”
    ——————
    I read the article…they just shoot that info off the cuff:

    “So GM management is considering a four-door version of the Converj concept for production, which wouldn’t be earlier than about 2013, in order to make a more solid business case for the car. ”

    Thats it. No author of this information…not even ‘a inside source told us’ — total BS here I’m afraid.

    /besides, right now GM can’t sell any car over 40K What would lead them think they can shoot for 70K…even if they put 40 doors on it? The amount of doors is not the problem here.
    ————–
    Side note: Mr. Lassa, the author of this article, is also the ‘future-seer’ and has penned one of the most notorious pieces of ‘auto journalism’ fiction of alltime.

    He rocked the ‘auto-planet’ with the revelation (in March 2007) and sent fanboys into a coma, that said the Camaro was axed, and that only the GTO would be running around in 2008 (he had mystery ‘Gm sources’ then…guess he has lost those now). Don’t you just hate all those GTOs running around now?

    …and oh yeah, he also added to his credibility by saying the outlook for sales on the HUMMER H3, (even though H2 sales had ‘plunged after its first year) was thriving. Hehe.

    http://www.motortrend.com/future/spied_vehicles/112_0508_2008_future_gm_models/index.html

    /lesson not learned


  16. 16
    Eric

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (12:00 pm)

    Lyle,
    As a loyal GM customer I hope they don’t do to the Converj what they did to the Volt. What I am talking about is the body styling. In order to really draw people to the Voltec techno is to couple it with attractive body styles like the Converj as now displayed. It was a shame they done away with the Volt concept body. There is a lot of the same technology coming down the pike with other car makers and it will come down to attractive body styling and price of course. Hope GM makes the Converj(as is) ASAP…..I want one!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  17. 17
    Steve T.

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (12:11 pm)

    Again more reasons to delay an otherwise beautiful car, the Cadillac Conerj, out of production .. “We got to consider a four door version” … This will carry any production, out to 2013 period, from Cadillac.

    I was ready to buy a Volt a couple years back … Since then they have taken a spectacular concept version and smoothed it down to oridinary for the masses … Back to “Ho-Hum” once again!!

    There’s so many excuses why the Volt isn’t on the road yet … It’s a disgrace to even count back. Now I’m just sitting and watching GM fade into memories as the economy has done everything it can to erase American Production period … Will the real Volt ever appear in dealer showrooms? I’m begining to think not … This has been fun thinking about though, but even that, has started to fade also.


  18. 18
    Tagamet

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (12:12 pm)

    nasaman@10
    Yes, I had a good, long run as a shrink. I may have to reenter the workforce (part time) to bank some $ for my Volt.-(

    swrap@11
    Many, many years ago I used the “handle” of swrinkwrap on the chats. I switched when it became too, er, transparent.

    Be well,
    Tag

    LJGTVWOTR!! NPNS


  19. 19
    noel park

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (12:24 pm)

    Well I was gong to just comment “10-88″ but, on reflection, this issue has taken me beyond 10-88 to where it makes me proactively angry.

    God forbid that the government should consider this as a qualifying product for advanced technology loans!

    IMHO, the purpose of advanced technology loans is to develop extremely efficient cars to wean as many people as possible of of imported oil, not to develop high margin toys and status symbols for rich people.


  20. 20
    Dave K.  =D~

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (12:31 pm)

    Financial news: Super Bowl clairvoyant appears on gm volt dot com.

    Each year that the Pittsburgh Steelers have won a Super Bowl the Stock Market has followed with a 25% rise. History will again repeat itself.

    ___________________________

    Many here ask, “How can I make some money?. Proposition makers are offering +195 odds that the Cardinals RB Tim Hightower WILL score a touchdown on Sunday.

    The Amazing Voltec says, “Hightower WILL score!”

    http://garfwod.250free.com/Photos/Hightower%20scores.jpg

    =D~


  21. 21
    RB

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (1:20 pm)

    #9 Tag says
    Fearing the eventual loss of the USA’s fiscal resources,
    OPEC drains the USA of all psychiatric resources.
    Sheik Therapy now Chic..

    Good to read this blog to discover gems like that!


  22. 22
    RB

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (1:25 pm)

    #1 beachliving says
    Will they just focus on putting one of these together. The more they spend worrying about other models and next generations the less money going into building the plant they keep putting off. I mean I know they need to sell cars, but if money is tight why not focus on a car that so many people want already.
    ——————————————

    The people who design cars have a special talent, and that talent is not much help in making a production line for the Volt, so they are using their time doing something useful, one hopes, a few years out.


  23. 23
    Jason M. Hendler

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (1:27 pm)

    A Cadillac is the next logical choice after creating the Opel, especially if they offer a fuel cell variant. It will be a few years, when batteries are cheaper / better / smaller, before the Voltec propulsion system finds its way into larger vehicles like trucks and minivans.


  24. 24
    RB

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (1:30 pm)

    #19 noel park
    What does “10-88″ mean?


  25. 25
    BillR1

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (1:53 pm)

    Unlike the Volt, the designers who created the Converj were familiar with the Aero requirements and what would improve the aerodynamics, such as a full belly pan, rearview cameras in lieu of mirrors, and special wheel rims that minimize disruptive airflow. I don’t anticipate a huge change to this design as it goes to production.

    Obviously, from GM’s viewpoint, this will be more profitable than the Volt, however, it may not meet with the government’s approval due to its limited market appeal.

    In any event, I think this car will make it to market, provided Li-Ion batteries can be made for an affordable price…

    http://blogs.edmunds.com/greencaradvisor/2009/01/bolivia-the-saudi-arabia-of-lithium-says-raw-material-for-ev-batts-wont-be-cheap.html?mktcat=enabler&AID=10364102&PID=3193616&kw=N&synpartner=edmunds&mktid=cj260233


  26. 26
    charlie h

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (3:31 pm)

    Oh, good. GM now has 4 (or is it 5?) unavailable hybrid electric vehicles in a wider than ever range of configurations.

    Choice is good!

    Choices in showrooms would be better.


  27. 27
    noel park

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (3:39 pm)

    #24 RB:

    A joke made by an old construction industry friend of mine on the old 2-way radio “10 code” – 10-4, 10-7, 10-9, 10-20, etc. “10-88″ is “You have obviously mistaken me for someone who gives a s**t”

    I have used and explained it here several times before. Do you mean to say that you do not carefully read and remember all of my brilliant comments? I’m shattered! (LOL – hehehe)

    #26 charlie h:

    Amen.


  28. 28
    N Riley

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (6:03 pm)

    #27 Noel Park

    Even as much as I follow your every word, I didn’t know what 10-88 meant. And I didn’t think I had missed any of your comments. Oh, well.

    Now, on subject at hand. I think GM needs to really concentrate on getting the Volt out and being made in large numbers before doing something like this. IMO…


  29. 29
    GM Volt Fan

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (6:10 pm)

    I’m all for a 4 door Converj. The more E-REVs available the better. I just want to make sure the GM gets the very best exterior/interior designers they can get their hands on to design the final production models that we’ll eventually see in showrooms. I want the exterior and interior to make customers just as happy as all the high technology under the hood. I hope GM’s designers and engineers work harder on the upcoming models than they have in the history of GM. I want to see GM start to WIN all those awards from the car magazines and the reviewers.

    Get ‘er done GM! Because of the Volt, you have a fanbase now … kind of like with Steve Jobs and Apple. You have a lot of customers in America and around the world counting on you. Set some high goals and get after accomplishing them … one day at a time … checking off milestone interim goals as you go.

    That’s how you get ‘er done. Just chipping away at the stone every day until your vision becomes a fine piece of sculpture. In due time, those goals you wrote down will become cars rolling off the assembly lines that everyone will be happy with.


  30. 30
    jbfalaska

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (7:46 pm)

    The Volt appears headed for a $10,000 tax break. Texas offers another $5,000 which will be able to combine with the Federal Tax Credit.

    A new wind blowing.
    http://usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/cars-trucks/daily-news/090129-Obama-s-Stimulus-Bill-Includes-10-000-Tax-Credit-for-Plug-In-Hybrids/


  31. 31
    vincent

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (7:50 pm)

    Here we go again. Same old school jerks at the wheel of a company with amazing talent…success staring down their collective faces like a double barrel shot gun…and they still can not see it.
    WTF…#@^**%$#@@!!!

    Shut up board members and build the 2 door NOW.

    Holy Crap does anyone have a sledge hammer!

    Put the Converj and the Volt into production…At The Same Time. Profits you idiots and your premium price.
    Dam……
    You Cant Fix Stupid Can You!
    Lets remember Bob said it does not cost much more to build the Converj body….hello McFly…(rapid knocling on the skull)
    anyone home….

    It’s like the old saying. “Now matter how hot she is some one is tired of her Shiat” Man I’m tired of these fools.
    Bail outs. and they are bail outs as the loans will never be paid back…must require the same drunk driving captains of the ship to be replaced.
    Bob, call me….I can help.
    OMG so sadly pathetic my people….


  32. 32
    john1701a

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (7:56 pm)

    The more E-REVs available the better.
    _____________________________________

    GM’s current problem is offering many brands all featuring similar vehicle models. Are they repeating that same history by spreading themselves too thin?

    It’s become absurd at this point, promoting several different EREV vehicles even though not a single one of them will be on the road for quite awhile still. To those closely watching the bailout situation, it sure looks like they are trying to paint a pretty picture of a situation doomed to fail.

    Not addressing the actual need is a big concern. Large quantities of affordable high-efficiency clean vehicles are what people have been demanding. Neither that nor the immediate financial survival changes seem to be getting any attention.


  33. 33
    vincent

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (8:00 pm)

    Oh yeah….here is another clue.
    Put a freakin Diesel in the Hummers matched up to a 6 or 7 speed tranny and watch the sales come back. I need a Valium…….
    If I can hit 29 MPG in a Twin Turbo V10 Diesel Touareg why are hummers such pigs with 8 mpg. There is so much mark up in them…a diesel that meets emissions can be done.


  34. 34
    RB

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (8:26 pm)

    #28 noel park regarding 10-88
    —————————————————-

    Thank you. ROTFL :)


  35. 35
    RB

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (8:36 pm)

    #32 john1701a said
    It’s become absurd at this point, promoting several different EREV vehicles even though not a single one of them will be on the road for quite awhile still.
    ——————————————————————-

    I feel somewhat the same way, though when I think about the Cadillac and realize it is only a concept car, I realize that actually we are talking about a small step, just a little more than drawing on napkins. Also, really this discussion is only among the tiny fraction of people who are interested in possible future electric cars. GM is teasing us, but it is far short of a promotion to the general public (as has taken place for the Volt).

    That is,GM is trying out some ideas and hoping for some good PR, yet not doing much beyond whatever is happening with Volt.


  36. 36
    Dave K.  =D~

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (8:48 pm)

    hi noel park #27,

    ““10-88″ is “You have obviously mistaken me for someone who gives a s**t””

    ____________________________

    Don’t forget the ever popular 10-99 (or code brown).

    “Unable to respond… taking a s**t”.

    Go Volt!

    =D~


  37. 37
    GM Volt Fan

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (9:18 pm)

    If Aston Martin can design a cool looking 4 door sports car/sedan, then so can GM. Why the hell not?

    The 2010 Aston Martin Rapide:

    http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/hot_lists/high_performance/ultra_luxury_lounge/2010_aston_martin_rapide_official_images+view-photos.html

    http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/hot_lists/high_performance/ultra_luxury_lounge/2010_aston_martin_rapide_official_images

    I’m a big fan of the Aston Martin Vantage … THE coolest looking car in the world IMHO. Maybe GM can “borrow” a few styling cues from Aston Martin for the upcoming Converj cars.


  38. 38
    vincent

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (10:13 pm)

    Funny how GM says people get emotional over two door models then sales die down…

    Holy Crap….isn’t that the point…make a car that people get emotional about!


  39. 39
    stuart22

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (11:02 pm)

    I said months ago that Cadillac should have been the first targeted E-Flex project. The higher battery cost could have been easier dealt with with a product with a higher initial price tag.

    Plus, the Cadillac brand image would benefit greatly, and I do believe market perception of Cadillac, more than Chevrolet, is connected to market perception of GM.

    Image is paramount with the luxury class consumer.


  40. 40
    Adrian

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (11:13 pm)

    Just make the car. You have the foundation, just do it. My word. The four door option as descibed isn’t all bad, and actually is good. The car isn’t a Camaro (Trans Am, etc…), so you have to expect some level of ease to get the rear seats of a Caddy.


  41. 41
    Cautious Fan

     

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    Jan 31st, 2009 (11:27 pm)

    WOW. I was surfing through Wikipedia and found out about GM’s XP-883. The concept for a hybrid was actually demonstrated 30 years ago.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Motors_XP-883


  42. 42
    Edwin Mang

     

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    Feb 1st, 2009 (12:18 am)

    I saw a cool GM truck Vs a Crossover Gaselectric the truck won on the cross country ( I wounder why ? ) The big engine won on excelleration by a little . The electric out towed the Truck by a lot .
    Perhaps Gen Two needs a two speed slip and slide like my old Chevie Two Nova had . At least that will give them gears to get going . That is a joke by the way .

    God Bless


  43. 43
    kurt

     

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    Feb 1st, 2009 (12:21 am)

    Performance is everything. And by that I mean, EFFICIENCY of performance. Of course, a car should look great and get you, some buddies, and some stuff from A to B. Where’s the sacrifice?
    To you “Keep the concept design” people: the new version of the Volt is twice as efficient, so if you want to shell out another $20 grand for a larger battery to haul your tank around Wisteria Lane, be my guest…I want a car. And I happen to like the look of efficiency much better. You know what is going to glide through the air when you see it. Do your homework, buy what you want, and if you’re even on this site enough, you’ll know that it’s an E-REV, and an affordable one at that.

    PS – I’m hoping they make Gen 2 out of carbon fiber: the body will cost more, but overall cost is less because it’ll require half the battery, and a smaller engine still because of weight lost in all three places. Not to mention safer. Does anyone reading this work for GM who can pass that along?


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    Feb 1st, 2009 (2:15 am)

    The argument is 2 door cars look “fashionable” and may sell well in their first year, but see sales erode quickly over the next years as practicality takes over from lust.

    So bring out a ‘limited’ run two door version in the first year, and then change to the more practical four door version. Same drive train, under floor, interior etc. Only the body shape would be different. GM might even be able to use the same production line.

    It’s not rocket science guys.

    PS: In this price bracket 35 mile AER will be OK. Keep the body shape.


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    nasaman

     

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    Feb 1st, 2009 (7:10 am)

    44 NZDavid…….PS: In this price bracket 35 mile AER will be OK. Keep the body shape.
    ============================================================================
    You’re absolutely right, David! Cadillac owners have ALWAYS gladly traded some efficiency (in MPG) for luxury — e.g., a Caddy @ 18mpg that’s similar in size to a Chevy @ 24mpg is perfectly acceptable to a luxury buyer without even a second thought, right?

    Thus a 4-dr Converj @ 35 AER will be as highly regarded in the market place as a 4-dr Volt @ 40 AER!* So build the Converj exactly like the concept, don’t tweak the stunning design for improved aerodynamics or reduced production costs!!!

    *The same market dynamics would apply to an E-REV version of the Provoq @ 35 AER


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    Feb 1st, 2009 (7:24 am)

    #43 Kurt said: PS – I’m hoping they make Gen 2 out of carbon fiber: the body will cost more, but overall cost is less because it’ll require half the battery, and a smaller engine still because of weight lost in all three places. Not to mention safer. Does anyone reading this work for GM who can pass that along?
    ————————————————————-

    While this sounds like a cool idea in theory, a carbon fiber body would add a huge cost to the vehicle with hardly any payoff. As GM engineers discovered, overall weight takes a back seat to aerodynamics vis a vis battery milage. With a carbon fiber body, you are never going to see a 50% reduction in the size of the battery. Hence, you are still going to need a 16KWh or near battery, which would still require the same size engine, and all you have done is increased the overall cost for carbon fiber. This would make the car, which many people already consider too expensive, tax credits included, completely unaffordable for the targeted demographics this car is being sold to. So like I said, a cool idea, but economically impractical.


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    Feb 1st, 2009 (1:35 pm)

    #46 Luke

    I’m interested to see where GM engineers have tested this, and what battery reduction could be accomplished. For instance, weight and aerodynamics are barely linked. No reason to sacrifice one for the other. Plus, production costs for CFRP keep coming down dramatically, and like I said…Gen 2. I’m just hoping!


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    Feb 1st, 2009 (10:59 pm)

    Levi #46

    I agree that carbon fiber will probably not be cost effective in most circumstances, but not because weight has little effect on the generator size, What the GM engineers were saying was that weight has reduced importance to the range and efficiency of EREVs. It still is a large factor and, more importantly, it has an exaggerated effect on hill climbing power demands. If it weren’t for climbing hills, the generator could 35KW. Also, I personally beieve the battery could probably be discharged another 10% before initiating range extended mode without substantially affecting battery life if the engineers weren’t concerned about having spare capacity to assist in extreme hill climbing conditions. But even with all of this, plus weight affected regular driving power demands, I don’t think you are looking at more than a 20% reduction in battery size. This is probably not enough to justify carbon fiber for most components unless its cost comes down.


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    koz

     

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    Feb 1st, 2009 (11:43 pm)

    NZDavid & Nasaman #44 & #45

    You know I agree with guys whole heartedly here! I’ve always thought and commented that a Cadillac made a lot more sense for the first gen EREV. Perhaps the Chevy is better from an image perspective but the Caddy fits. 35 miles AER & 40-45MPG range extended compares very favorably to luxury sport sedans on the market. IMO, GM should schedule this for production in 2013 or 2014 with VOLTEC gen 2, which should include a 150KW. The larger AC motor does cost much extra in weight or $. This would allow them to scale VOLTEC gen2 up and down with higher and lower performance power electronics packages. This would be kind of like Windows CE, Professional, Home, etc. They could use most of the same hardware for small CUVs, Microvans, compact sedans, etc that are <3500lbs. Gen3 could diverge into 2 variants: one for 3500-5000lbs and a further cost reduced one for <3500lbs. Gen3 6-8 years out is where EREV could become ubiquitous across GM’s lineup. There should be significant improvements in the battery, the power electronics, the motors, and the ICE. The should have a small, lightweight purpose-built ICE for the EREV’s steady power demand. There should also be some interesting weight reduction technologies applied by then as we as some really cool control apps. This really a whole new world of automotive engineering and design that creates so many areas for innovation! It gets more and more exciting the more you think about it.

    BUT…LJGTVWOTR


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    Anthony BC

     

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    Feb 2nd, 2009 (3:39 am)

    Don’t let the image of the Converjay burn too long into the retina, GM will change the body before it hits the street! I’ll bet ya!

    Ooo GM, prove me wrong, don’t VOLTize this one too!


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    Beni

     

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    Feb 2nd, 2009 (1:04 pm)

    Why does it take so long for GM to start selling the volt? Check out this site (http://www.evxteam.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=5&Itemid=26) where a high school transformed a Saturn to plugin hybrid doing 130 miles on a charge and 180mpg.
    How come high school students can do better and faster than a full fledged car company?