The shiny new 2016 Cadillac ATS-V and CTS-V haven’t gone on sale yet, but General Motors is considering some interesting stuff for future V-series sequels and other rear-wheel drive performance models.
Those future models could be offered with an all-wheel drive system that uses an electric motor to power the front wheels, according to Edmunds.
This would give Cadillac a way to compete with luxury rivals that offer all-wheel drive across their model ranges, without impacting fuel economy too much.
Cars like the 2016 Acura NSX, BMW i8, and Porsche 918 Spyder have already demonstrated the performance capabilities of electric all-wheel drive, but the GM applications would likely be a little less extreme.
That includes future V-series Caddies, and possibly the Chevy Camaro and a “Corvette derivative.” The system is also expected to trickle down to more mainstream cars and crossovers.
It’ll be awhile before you can actually buy one of these electric all-wheel drive cars, though.
Adapating an existing rear-wheel drive platform for all-wheel drive is tricky, because there isn’t exactly a lot of real estate in the front clips of most modern cars to install a drive axle.
At the recent Detroit Auto Show, Cadillac president Johan de Nysschen told Edmunds that the system wouldn’t be retrofitted to existing cars, it would have to be designed in from the beginning.
So with Cadillac apparently leading the charge at GM for electric all-wheel drive, it could be years before the system sees production.
The ATS is just two years old, while the CTS is just about a year old. Cadillac i set to launch its CT6 flagship at the 2015 New York Auto Show in April, but design work on that is probably finished already.