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General Motors announced a $332 million investment into new powertrains today, including an eight-speed transmission slated for some of its vehicles by 2016.
General Motors North America president Mark Reuss isn’t ready to give up on electric cars. In fact, he’s adamant about their progress.
The Chevrolet Volt and Nissan Leaf initiated a whole new movement in the auto industry. With the realization that an all-electric vehicle can be useful in everyday driving situations thanks to a large battery and more efficient fast charging technology, automakers are hopping on the electric vehicle bandwagon.
“Overall automakers want to be prepared,” says Devin Lindsay, an automotive powertrain analyst from IHS Automotive. “EVs are another tool for automakers to reach out to consumers” he says, mentioning that automakers are taking EVs seriously, rather than just putting a bunch of batteries and motors in an existing product.
It’s interesting to see how automakers make electric cars from the ground up to use only electric propulsion. For example Tesla and Cadillac are all making vehicles that will exclusively be used with an electric powertrain. Others are modifying their current successful vehicles to EVs. Lets take a look at the different EVs that will be arriving soon (or are already here), and learn a bit about the new technology behind it.
10. Cadillac ELR
Sports cars have often set the bar in new automotive technology and trends. Things like dual-clutch transmissions and forced induction engines were practically engineered for the sole purpose of taking a sports car to the absolute edge of excitement and danger.
The report states that the ELR has been dubbed a 2+2, meaning two small seats in the rear, similar to a Porsche 911. The Volt uses a t-shaped battery pack that is adapted for a front-drive layout, but a 2+2 configuration would allow for the battery pack to be mounted in such a way as to clear a driveshaft sending power to the rear wheels.
Rick Kranz, the author of the piece, suggests that rear seat room would be compromised, but the 2+2 layout of the coupe – plus the use of the rear-drive platform shared with the Cadillac ATS – would allow for Cadillac to justify a price premium over the Chevrolet Volt, something that new sheetmetal and an advanced infotainment system would not be able to achieve. If this report turns out to be accurate, then the ELR could be a game changer, as the first front-engine rear-drive electric car on the market.
[Source: Automotive News]
Discuss this story at Cadillac-ELR.com
If you’re eagerly awaiting a more family friendly Volt, or a more luxurious and sporty one, you’ll have to be patient. According to Nick Reilly, the head of GM Europe, the automaker isn’t planning to release any Volt spin-offs until 2015.
The reason for the date is that that’s when the current Volt’s life-cycle is up and GM is currently focused entirely on making the Volt a success. GM doesn’t want to split its attention on other models, and with the high price of the Volt’s high-tech components, future generations of the technology should be more affordable.
Two models currently being considered for production are the Volt MPV5 Concept, based on the Chevy Orlando platform, as well as the Cadillac ELR Concept.
GALLERY: Chevrolet Volt MPV5 Concept
GALLERY: Cadillac ELR Concept
[Source: AutoNews via CNET]