Why is the Cadillac ELR so expensive? It’s going after the BMW 6 Series … for some reason

cadillac elr expensive going bmw 2014

Ever since the Cadillac ELR extended range EV was announced, automotive journalists like myself have been wondering why the hell it costs so much.

After all, $75,995 is a lot for what is essentially a Chevy Volt in a tux. It seems, though, that we now have at least part of an answer as to why it’ll cost such a pretty penny.

GM says that the ELR isn’t going to be going up against the Tesla as a luxury EV as we had once wagered. Instead, it will be targeting BMW 6 Series buyers … for some reason.

On one hand, this makes at least some sense, as the price point chosen by GM would in fact make it competitive with the 6 Series.

On the other hand, this move strikes me as a bit nuts, with all due respect to the BMW brass. The ELR’s performance isn’t terrible, it can manage 0-60 in just under eight seconds, but it’s a very far cry from the performance-oriented vehicles put up by the Germans.

For the same amount of money, you can get a BMW 640ci that can jump to 60 mph in less than five seconds. That’s a full 60 percent quicker than the electrified Caddy.

What’s more, the ELR is front-wheel drive whereas the Teutonic terrors it’s up against are rear-wheel drive. Really, there just is no comparison between these vehicles on performance.

According to Wards Auto, Cadillac is banking on the high-quality luxury appointments fitted to the ELR, including genuine suede, wood, carbon fiber, and 20-way leather-wrapped electric seats to draw in customers.

I just hope that the folks at GM have decided to back up this thought with actual market research. With most companies that would seem obvious, but I sometimes get the sense that GM’s market research consists entirely of putting cars on sale and seeing if people buy them.

Lets hope that’s not the case. It would be a shame for Cadillac to miss an opportunity to be relevant because of a bad pricing decision.