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Cadillac Unveils Pricier Alternative To Tesla Model S

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the paying-the-price dept.

Transportation 196

An anonymous reader writes "Cadillac has officially unveiled its Tesla S alternative, but at $5,000 more than the Tesla, it may not be the cheaper option you've been looking for. 'Cadillac is touting the ELR's 8-inch touchscreen powered by its CUE infotainment system — which two years in is still a buggy mess — along with a range of safety and convenience features, including lane departure warning, forward collision alert, and a 24-hour concierge service to answer questions. There's also a "regen on demand" feature that allows the driver to boost the brake regeneration, slowing the vehicle and recouping energy by pulling on the flappy paddles behind the steering wheel. GM's bean counters are quick to point out that depending on what federal and state tax incentives buyers are eligible for, the net pricing could be as low as $68,495, but that's still a tough sell considering you're basically getting a Volt with more presence and less practicality.'"

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But I bet it comes with a foot warmer (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114263)

So your feet never get cold when you're pressing on the pedals.

$5000 gets you... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114279)

1) A nicer interior
2) A nicer exterior (tesla is bland, this is one of the nicest looking cars ever)
3) A car you can drive anywhere without charging
4) A car that will work for more than 10 years
5) Support from a company that wont be out of business in 10 years
6) A lot more technology features (the tesla has a rear view camera but not much else)

Re:$5000 gets you... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114335)

And the Tesla S has more power off the get-go than a BMW M5 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vvHTN0Yi1t4). You're forgetting that these are toys for rich people.

Re:$5000 gets you... (2)

nospam007 (722110) | about a year ago | (#45114821)

"You're forgetting that these are toys for rich people."

The Tesla perhaps, the article talks about a toy for rich, old people.

Re:$5000 gets you... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114373)

Nope. Per TFA:

essentially a two-door Chevrolet Volt with a handsome exterior and a leather-lined cabin.

Re:$5000 gets you... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114409)

1) Subjective. I fail to see much difference, except I'd bet the dashboard seams in the Model S don't squeak after 5k miles like every GM product's dashboard, ever.

2) Subjective. The Model S is a beauty, and the Volt is not. This car is a boxier Volt, which makes it even uglier, IMO. Then again, I've never known GM to build anything that looks better than the average pile of animal feces.

3) Its battery life is pathetic, so it makes up for it with a mediocre ICE to charge with. Wake me when it has a range near 1000 miles, which is what a setup like this should be sporting.

4) A GM? Not likely. I have yet to see one last much beyond the warranty, and I've seen several that didn't last even that long. GM should be replacing Country Time [countrytime.com] any day now.

5) Where is GM from 10 years ago? Gone? Buyouts and bailouts are two different things, and GM was bought out. Meanwhile, Tesla paid back their loan nearly a decade early. And that loan wasn't part of a bailout or a buyout, it was an R&D loan for their electric vehicle technology.

6) Window dressing. Any idiot can bolt on more irrelevant crap, and GM hires the best idiots they can find to do exactly that.

Re:$5000 gets you... (3, Insightful)

amiga3D (567632) | about a year ago | (#45114691)

I agree with everything with the exception of number 2, "Then again, I've never known GM to build anything that looks better than the average pile of animal feces." The 69 Camaro was pretty nice.

Re:$5000 gets you... (1)

Anna Merikin (529843) | about a year ago | (#45114427)

Fashionistas might like it. It goes well with the new Hasselblad-decorated Sony NEX7 http://www.dpreview.com/news/2013/06/10/hasselblad-lunar-now-shipping [dpreview.com] or the new Leica M decorated by Jony Ives and Mark Newsom.

Of course, some of a certain age might remember the last time Cadillac tried this, in the '80s, with the Cimmaron, a rebadged Chevy Cavalier with the addition of clear-coat paint and a hideous chrome-plated luggage rack on the top of the trunk lid. It nearly led to the death of the brand.

As an American and as a human being with a conscience, I don't know whether to root for a success here, or to well-deserved failure. Mebbe newly-rich Chinese and Russians are attracted to these, but even they will, eventually learn the real value of things. They'll spend a hundred bucks on a Ferrari baseball cap and call it a day.
 

Re:$5000 gets you... (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#45115215)

"Hasselblad Lunar"? This [wikipedia.org] is an actual lunar Hasselblad, accept no imitations!

Re:$5000 gets you... (3, Insightful)

GrumpySteen (1250194) | about a year ago | (#45114451)

1) A nicer interior
2) A nicer exterior (tesla is bland, this is one of the nicest looking cars ever)

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder... and you need to get your eyes checked. This so far from one of the "nicest looking cars ever" that it makes me wonder if you've ever seen any other car in your life.

3) A car you can drive anywhere without charging

Of course, not charging it will eliminate most of the benefits of lugging that 400 lb battery around everywhere and will make your fuel economy go down significantly, but hey... you can still point at it and claim you're environmentally conscious, right?

5) Support from a company that wont be out of business in 10 years

Let's just ignore the fact that GM filed chapter 11 bankruptcy just four years ago and had to be rescued by the government. That's completely irrelevant to whether the company will be around in 10 years.

6) A lot more technology features (the tesla has a rear view camera but not much else)

"Cadillac is touting the ELRâ(TM)s 8-inch touchscreen powered by its CUE infotainment system â" which two years in is still a buggy mess"

Technology that is badly designed and doesn't work properly isn't a selling point.

Re:$5000 gets you... (1)

justthinkit (954982) | about a year ago | (#45114601)

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder... and you need to get your eyes checked. This so far from one of the "nicest looking cars ever"
.

You're saying this [theautochannel.com] is "so far from one of the nicest looking cars ever"?

Re:$5000 gets you... (1)

nosferatu1001 (264446) | about a year ago | (#45114781)

Yes.

Trying to do the angular sharp look of an aventador, but falling SO wide of the mark that it doesnt even register

Tesla S is much nicer to look at.

Re:$5000 gets you... (2)

AK Marc (707885) | about a year ago | (#45115005)

Is that even the same car? The pictures in TFA don't look anything like that. The one in TFA looks boring and bland. The one you posted looks like a prototype that never saw production.

Re:$5000 gets you... (1)

justthinkit (954982) | about a year ago | (#45115255)

I think you're right. I just googled "Cadillac electric" to get that pic.

Re:$5000 gets you... (2)

Bearhouse (1034238) | about a year ago | (#45114777)

Why flamebait mods?
The guy makes some interesting points

Re:$5000 gets you... (2)

AK Marc (707885) | about a year ago | (#45115037)

He makes no points. "I don't like it" was the point. Posting an opinion as a fact (especially a controversial opinion) *is* flamebait.

Just to get this straight... (5, Informative)

Nemyst (1383049) | about a year ago | (#45114291)

Since TFS doesn't give any detail worth noting, this thing has two doors (not four like the S), a laughable 35mi electric range before the gasoline engine kicks in for 300mi total (which is still fairly bad, especially when the S has 208-265mi range pure electric depending on the model), a smaller (8" vs 17" for the S) touchscreen with a poorer OS/UI, all that for $75k. Oh yeah, and it looks like a blockier Volt. In fact, it's pretty much a Volt with a few extra features at twice the price.

If this is the best GM can do, they better get back to the drawing board quick.

Re:Just to get this straight... (-1, Troll)

sycodon (149926) | about a year ago | (#45114299)

Your tax dollars at work...or, did the feds already sell for a loss?

Re:Just to get this straight... (1)

pesho (843750) | about a year ago | (#45114381)

You missed the major selling point for the Cadillac, which is touted in an unbelievable series of cliches ("sexy sophistication" anyone?) here/a>. It has whopping 207hp and 295 lb of torque vs. the meager 416hp and 443lb of the Tesla. That's going to make people looking for an expensive sports car run to G with bundles. [wired.com]

Re:Just to get this straight... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114395)

Rather get 60kWh battery bank in the Model S, then this Chevy Volt 16.5kWh bank.

Re:Just to get this straight... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114399)

It looks like they're trying the Cimarron [wikipedia.org] approach again. First because they think people have forgotten the Cimarron by now, and second it's not a Cimarron because it's electric. (Although it pretty much is an expensive rebadge of the Volt.)

Also I'm wondering, if Buick gets theirs, will they bring back the Electra name?

Re:Just to get this straight... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114655)

A bunch of people are saying this. You (and they) are just wrong.
Sharing a drivetrain is not a rebadge.

This may be a complete flop, it could be a bad decision, if I was buying a car
in that price range it would be the Tesla.

But words have meaning.

Rebadge. Look at the word - it refers to taking essentially the entire car and just putting a different badge
on it. (along with maybe a few minor cosmetic bits). The Cimarron was a rebate. This isn't.

Re:Just to get this straight... (1)

amiga3D (567632) | about a year ago | (#45114701)

You are correct. The Volt is actually a better vehicle dollar for dollar.

Re:Just to get this straight... (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about a year ago | (#45115097)

The Cimarron had features (mainly cosmetic/convenience) that weren't available on the "base" model. It wasn't that bad of a car, better than the base, though not worth the cost difference. I didn't own one, but a friend had one, and I drove it (and other GM cars) regularly.

As for this, it's not a pure rebadge, in that there are some major drivetrain changes, but it uses the same battery pack, not unlike a rebadge using the same engine but different transmission (a common rebadge trick for differentiation).

So I see it as a rebadge. It's a Volt Hybrid (plug-in) - Cadillac style.

Re:Just to get this straight... (1)

DarkOx (621550) | about a year ago | (#45114825)

What I don't get is how its an answer to the Tesla at all. This thing is a plugin hybrid, the Tesla is an all electric. Its not really the same animal at all.

Re:Just to get this straight... (1)

sasparillascott (1267058) | about a year ago | (#45114859)

In one sense you're totally right, however the Tesla S besides having much better performance also has much longer range (not Nissan Leaf range) so you can do most driving folks would need to do. Unless you're looking at driving really long distances (150 miles in a day or longer, where you'd be better off with a Prius) the Tesla just smokes this car.

I think the big failing is the price...its way too expensive for what you get compared to a Tesla Model S or a Volt. Destined to be a sales dud unless they bring it down in price by $20-$25k. JMHO, saying it as someone who likes the Volt and wants GM to succeed.

Re:Just to get this straight... (1)

Golden_Rider (137548) | about a year ago | (#45114961)

It's what happens when you completely run out of ideas. You take some old stuff and glue on the new "in" thing.

"Let's make a movie about vampires ... (booo!) ..... IN SPACE!!!! (yay!!!)"

And in this particular case - let's use the existing car design and old components ... PLUS HYBRID!

And yes, I have no idea either how they want to sell this car at that price. It just fails on so many levels (plus, imo, it is ugly). At that price, you could easily buy either the Tesla S for pure electric drive or for thousands less a hybrid by BMW/Mercedes or any other luxury brand with more luxury and build quality. Yes, usually they have less pure electric range, but come on - it does not matter if the range is 35 miles or maybe 10 miles, either one will not get you to work and back, and e.g. the Mercedes E-class hybrid at least has a DIESEL engine.

Re:Just to get this straight... (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about a year ago | (#45115157)

"Let's make a movie about vampires ... (booo!) ..... IN SPACE!!!! (yay!!!)"

I like your ideas and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

Re:Just to get this straight... (1)

squiggleslash (241428) | about a year ago | (#45114889)

35 miles before the gasoline engine kicks in, you say?

The Tesla's gasoline engine kicks in when? It doesn't? It doesn't have one?

So we have an apples and oranges comparison basically. The Tesla's range appears to be 208-265 miles (according to your comments) before it becomes stranded unless it's driven somewhere within range of a charging station. Tesla is improving their network of charging stations, so this isn't bad, though potential customers need to be confident they'll only be driving in those areas.

The Cadillac - essentially it can drive anywhere in the country, though the efficiency of it goes down if it's driven more than 35 miles from home. It will be very efficient for most commutes (though not all), but will be passably efficient for longer distances. Still better than a normal vehicle but not as efficient as a Tesla Model S.

It sounds to be that the comments on range really can't be pigeon holed into a one being superior than the other type thing. Different drivers will want different things. My suspicion is that the GM model is going to be more suitable to the majority of drivers in 2013/2014, but Tesla's intention to expand the number of public charging points may change that in the longer term.

Re:Just to get this straight... (1)

clarkkent09 (1104833) | about a year ago | (#45115035)

Looks great to me but that's subjective. However, 300 mile radius v 208-265 comparison is irrelevant. One can be refueled everywhere in 5 minutes for another 300 miles, the other takes 8 hours unless you find one of the supercharging stations which are still very rare. That is a HUGE difference for anybody who needs to drive that distance occasionally (say LA-Bay Area or LA-Vegas).

Re:Just to get this straight... (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | about a year ago | (#45115193)

yep you hit it on the head, its another shining example of how GM just does not "get it" and how they should have been alow to fail rather than wasting everyone's time headed right back down the same freaking road

All electric is not the way to go (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114307)

Get a plug in Prius or similar. A small gasoline engine is not going to damage the environment. It's ludicrous to use all electric given the low range.

I applaud efforts to reduce CO2 emissions. I despise people who do it ass backwards.

Re:All electric is not the way to go (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114417)

Smug Alert!

Re:All electric is not the way to go (1)

joe_frisch (1366229) | about a year ago | (#45114493)

I think that electric vs. hybrid depends on your use pattern. If your typical use is a commute that is within the vehicle range, and you either rarely take long trips, or you have a second car, then pure electric may make sense. If you frequently need to drive beyond the recharge range of a pure electric, then a hybrid makes sense.

In my case the 30 mile range would work out OK. That would let me do my daily commute all on electric, but I would have the gas engine for long trips.

I don't personally want the sort of car the Cadillac builds, but I can see the appeal to some people. If most of your driving is 20mph in rush-hour traffic, a high performance sedan may provide no benefit at all, but soft seats, good sound system etc may make things more pleasant if you can afford them.

Whether pure-electric or hybrid is a win on CO2 likely depends on the energy mix in the area where you are charging the car. It also depends on how you measure: average energy mix or marginal energy mix? Then there are of course energy costs for the fabrication of the car, batteries etc. Overall though both approaches are quite good. The only influence I'd like to see the government apply to this is through taxes on energy sources, not specific taxes ore rebates on specific technology choices.

Re:All electric is not the way to go (1)

GrumpySteen (1250194) | about a year ago | (#45114525)

1) RTFA. The Cadillac in the article is a hybrid with a gasoline engine, not all electric, so your rant is irrelevant.

2) There's nothing ass-backwards about an electric car if it fits the needs of the person buying it. Just because it doesn't fit your needs doesn't mean it shouldn't be sold.

Maybe so but it is American Made (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114311)

And Tesla is made in China mostly.

Re:Maybe so but it is American Made (2)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about a year ago | (#45114331)

I should not reply to AC, but...

the assembly plant is right here in silicon valley.

parts for EVERYONE are always made in china or overseas somewhere. even mighty caddy has parts made overseas. no one can resist the lure of cheap parts. but assembly location does matter and its built here, not in china.

Re:Maybe so but it is American Made (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114499)

parts for EVERYONE are always made in china or overseas somewhere. even mighty caddy has parts made overseas. no one can resist the lure of cheap parts. but assembly location does matter and its built here, not in china.

The Model S has only 55% of it's parts made in US/Canada:
http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=8233&d=1343437424 [teslamotorsclub.com]

The vast majority of Ford/GM/Chrysler cars are above this percentage, although only slightly (mostly in the 60-70% range). There are a handful that are significantly higher, as well as a handful significantly lower. I can't find any info about the Cadillac ELR, but the Chevy Volt is only 46% US/Canadian parts:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/3e/2012_Chevrolet_Volt_window_sticker_01_2012_0483.jpg [wikimedia.org]

Re:Maybe so but it is American Made (1)

haruchai (17472) | about a year ago | (#45114645)

That's because of the battery. But all the electricity it uses will be domestic :-)

Re:Maybe so but it is American Made (2)

WaywardGeek (1480513) | about a year ago | (#45115315)

Thanks for the link. The batteries, which are a pretty major component by cost, are made in Japan by Panasonic. I was really hoping Tesla would find a way to work with an American battery vendor, but that didn't work out so well for Fisker, so I can't say I blame them. The steering column and maybe a handful of other stuff is made by Mercedes, who owns a small percentage of Tesla. This probably accounts for why it has a lower percentage made in the US/Canada.

Re:Maybe so but it is American Made (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114343)

Yes, which means it's crap. Seriously, American-made cars have been crap for years, and all but the most deluded patriots realize this.

Re:Maybe so but it is American Made (2)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | about a year ago | (#45114415)

american assembly is not a problem.

american influenced design is the problem.

quite a big difference.

otoh, tesla is an outsider and not the usual car company. I would not expect old school gm or ford to be even able to design (much less make) a tesla style car.

if I could afford an S, I'd get one. even with the gawdy and unwanted laptop screen in the thing, I'd still probably get one.

Re:Maybe so but it is American Made (1)

WindBourne (631190) | about a year ago | (#45114769)

Actually, little of it comes from China. Batteries are currently from Japan. The electronics are from taiwain. And most of the rest is American. OTOH, I am willing to bet that less than 60% of this caddi is from America.

Re:Maybe so but it is American Made (3)

Osgeld (1900440) | about a year ago | (#45115201)

most of GM parts are made in mexico, they just do the final assembly here

The $5,000 gets you... (0, Troll)

Nova Express (100383) | about a year ago | (#45114317)

...to help pay for the heath and retirement benefits of union employees who already retired at 55 [heritage.org] .

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114379)

...to help pay for the heath and retirement benefits of union employees who already retired at 55 [heritage.org] .

Yeah, a real shame that people negotiated decent benefits for themselves. Wadda they think they are, CEOs?

Fucking Randroids.

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (1)

thrillseeker (518224) | about a year ago | (#45114477)

A word other than negotiation is in order if American taxpayers ended up footing the bill.

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (1)

Qzukk (229616) | about a year ago | (#45114557)

A word other than negotiation is in order if American taxpayers ended up footing the bill.

My observation of the situation is that managers signed contracts their company couldn't afford. The people who were screaming loudest against bailing out homeowners doing the same for mortgage contracts they can't afford suddenly changed sides at this point and screamed at the unions for having unaffordable contracts, so what did you expect the outcome to be?

Also, since 1974, the PBGC [wikipedia.org] has been bailing out pensions, so even if GM had been allowed to crash and burn, taxpayers would still end up footing the bill, with no stock sales to try and get some of the money back.

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114857)

The thing is, with the investment required, there is no "negotiation", there is only capitulation, robots or bankruptcy, and generally, at this scale, you get two for three. GM managed to get a trifecta through mismanagement.

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45115105)

Ah, the old "entitled to labor" argument. Usually spouted by people who feel that labor isn't "entitled to jobs" but hey, that's entitlement mentality for you, everyone is entitled to whatever they want, everyone else's wants be damned.

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (5, Insightful)

squiggleslash (241428) | about a year ago | (#45114839)

No, the word remains "negotiation". The fact that GM was managed by incompetent, but sadly typical, executives who refused to take any notice of those "dirty hippies" and "tree huggers" who said things like "Uh, gasoline isn't always going to be cheap" and "Wait, isn't the middle east unstable these days? Shouldn't we develop some better, more fuel efficient, vehicles just in case the shit hits the fan", doesn't change the fact that the union and the crappy management did negotiate a deal that would have been perfectly fine had they, you know, produced decent vehicles.

BTW, isn't criticizing someone else's negotiation compensation "the politics of envy" and "class warfare", or does that only apply when it's criticism of executives who get obscene bonuses for running their companies into the ground?

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (1)

silas_moeckel (234313) | about a year ago | (#45114523)

No problem with that but GM should have been allowed to fail because of it. 100% contribution of pension funds needs to be the law, no hope we will be able to cover our promises 60 years down the road. It quickly becomes to big to fail which translates into make the taxpayers pay for large private mistakes to insure people that made a bad bet do not get hurt buy it.

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (1)

squiggleslash (241428) | about a year ago | (#45114851)

GM did fail. It went bankrupt.

The government did lend the ashes of the company some money to ensure that a viable business could be built, and also preventing GM's creditors from going bankrupt, which would have caused immense damage to the surviving car industry. But GM went bankrupt. And the replacement company, by all accounts, is a success, which is pretty good considering the economy continues to be in deep shit.

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114577)

Fucking Randroids who have to fund it despite never buying a single GM product in their life. I don't remember every bying a Chevy anything or being part of the negotiations, yet here I am paying for it.

It sounds like you endorse theft as long as the right people get it.

What SHOULD happen is if those deals bankrupt the company, then the company goes bankrupt and they don't get the deals. What SHOULDN'T happen is people who were not present shouldn't be paying for it. We have even more of it by the Federal Government promosing themselves great benefits to be paid by people too young to currently vote, but since you think you are on the receiving end of that deal I'm sure you are ok with that as well.

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (3, Insightful)

cforciea (1926392) | about a year ago | (#45114593)

That article is awesome. You know that somebody is being extra fair with their comparisons when they start adding things like payroll tax and unemployment insurance to the cost of an employee to inflate the number, as if that has anything to do with unions. And my heart just breaks for the auto manufacturers that they pay a third more than base salaries because their workers have to work on average hundreds of hours of overtime per year.

Here's the real takeaway from that article for me: base wages are $30/hr, the effective wage due to the overtime ends up being $40/hr, and the general rule of thumb for the fully loaded cost of a worker is usually 150%-200% of salary, so they are right on target. Remember that, for instance, 4 weeks total of vacation and sick leave costs 7.7%, unemployment insurance costs another few percent, payroll tax is another 6.8%, throw in a few more percent for worker's comp. You're north of 20% before you even start paying for health insurance and retirement.

If you think that's too much compensation for somebody working in a factory, you don't believe that the United States should have a middle class.

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (1)

haruchai (17472) | about a year ago | (#45114657)

Why are you hating on the makers living the American dream?

Re:The $5,000 gets you... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114809)

DETROIT could be re-tooled to pump these out mega-production (mass-production with a big-ass-induction motor).
Oh, wait, non-disgruntled black community with a decent wage? Oh, wait, no more Iraq, Libya-esque invasions?

back to the drawing board (yankee motor board members should be drawn-and-quartered)

Whats this about the Learned Protocols of Kyoto?

I'm Elon Musk (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114339)

I'm Elon Musk and I approve this negative review of my competitor's product.

Is anyone on /. old enough to care about cadillac? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114345)

Really, it *IS* your father's cadillac.

Altenrative to the Model S? (5, Interesting)

cforciea (1926392) | about a year ago | (#45114353)

It looks like news outlets all over the place are comparing this to the Model S, but then like 2 sentences later point out how it is mechanically basically a Volt. How does that make it an alternative to the Model S at all? Doesn't that just make it an alternative to the Volt? Was the Volt an alternative to the Model S?

Re:Altenrative to the Model S? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114423)

It is NOT an alternative to the all-electric Tesla Model S.
It is an alternative to the Chevy Volt which REQUIRES you to burn at least some gasoline to keep the backup gasoline generator in good shape.
When it does NOT have a place to put in gasoline THEN you can compare it to a Tesla...

Re:Altenrative to the Model S? (3, Informative)

Nemyst (1383049) | about a year ago | (#45114463)

The press is looking for something to compare Tesla to, almost obsessively so. Fisker blew out a while ago so they're really hard-pressed to find something. The Leaf, i-MiEV and Volt are competitors to the Model S, which says a lot about the state of the industry. From that perspective, the ELR is very much a competitor; in fact, considering the price point and styling, it's the closest competitor I can think of. All the other electric cars are going for the Prius style of eco-friendly compact car.

Re:Altenrative to the Model S? (5, Interesting)

slew (2918) | about a year ago | (#45114689)

There's always the Porsche 918 Spyder hybrid (although that is a little bit pricier alternative)

Re:Altenrative to the Model S? (2)

WindBourne (631190) | about a year ago | (#45114759)

The simple fact is, that there is NOTHING out there that competes against Tesla. And if it did, it would have to costs over 200K. The reason is that Tesla holds the majority of useful patents for the ability to produce a decent electric car.

Re:Altenrative to the Model S? (5, Insightful)

GrumpySteen (1250194) | about a year ago | (#45114537)

Nobody gives a shit about the Volt, though. Lots of people will click a headline if it mentions the Tesla Model S, though, so that's what it gets compared to.

Re:Altenrative to the Model S? (2)

the_humeister (922869) | about a year ago | (#45114541)

This is so annoying. The Tesla S is a competitor to the BMW 5 series, Audi 6 series, and the Mercedes-Benz E series. And I know why the automotive press is not saying this: they want page views! This new Cadillac is definitely not a competitor direct competitor to the Tesla S because the buyers are completely different.

Re:Altenrative to the Model S? (3, Insightful)

squiggleslash (241428) | about a year ago | (#45114863)

My understanding is that the submitter went through a list of things to compare it to, to ensure Slashdot would take the article, but felt that comparing it to iOS 7, the iPhone 5S, the Makerbot, the Raspberry Pi, or Kickstarter, just would be a stretch too far.

The eventual pick was made on the basis that the Model S is a car, like the new Cadillac.

There are no alternatives to Model S (1)

coder111 (912060) | about a year ago | (#45115095)

Model S is the only "long-range battery electric luxury car" out there. In that, there is no competition. All the hybrids still retain their internal combustion engines, and with them all the added weight and complexity and breakage and exhaust and dirt and oil. So you cannot compare hybrids with battery electric vehicles, as they are completely different thing. Hybrids, even plugin hybrids, are not "long-range battery electric cars". All other battery electric cars are not long-range, and are not big/luxury cars.

If you are comparing "luxury cars", then you need to add BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Jaguar into equation, and compare it on things like performance, interior, feeling, ride, design etc. I doubt Cadillac would fare well in this comparison.

I wish Tesla cars got to Europe sooner...

--Coder

Model S is the only one, period (4, Insightful)

Overzeetop (214511) | about a year ago | (#45115203)

I'm not aware of any other production long-range battery car? The Model S is the only all electric car with a 200+ mile range that does not include an ICE, luxury or not.

I'm more impressed each press release by Tesla - not because of anything in particular, but because it seems so impossibly hard for every other manufacturer in the world to even get to half of the Model S range on batteries alone. In fact, if there weren't actual, on the road vehicles I would say - based on their marketing literature and the performance of every other manufacturer - that they were full of shit and may as well be hyping the Moller AirCar.

Cadillac? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114385)

If there is a car that screams old and crass, that's Cadillac. We are talking a brand that appeals to the oldest segment of society, and only in the US - when it comes to a presence as a luxury car anywhere else, Cadillac only elicits smirks. My guess is that your average Tesla buyer will probably be repelled by Cadillac. Chances are Cadillac has another Catera in its hands - a car meant for a market that does not exist.

Re:Cadillac? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114873)

My guess is that your average Tesla buyer will probably be repelled by Cadillac. ...

Aimed at different markets, of course one is repelled by the other. Just remember that there are also a lot of rich people that live in the midwest "flyover" states. Let's see how many of each are sold in the next year or two. Remember, there are many more Cadillac dealers than Tesla dealers, and (outside of some /.'ers and other early adopters) most people want to have a dealer nearby.

my goodness a whole 8 inches of display (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114429)

that may as well be 0 inches for all the good a lcd screen is in a car when the sun hits it, do you think "sorry officer i had no idea of my speed because the sun is shining" will work ?
as for having touch as an interface is beyond stupidity in a car, why do 99% of cars have knobs and buttons ? clue: it isnt a technological problem its more of a "how can i adjust ac/settings/radio/nav without taking my eye of the road"

good luck in court

Re:my goodness a whole 8 inches of display (3, Insightful)

Golden_Rider (137548) | about a year ago | (#45115019)

as for having touch as an interface is beyond stupidity in a car, why do 99% of cars have knobs and buttons ? clue: it isnt a technological problem its more of a "how can i adjust ac/settings/radio/nav without taking my eye of the road"

good luck in court

I agree, real knobs and buttons in a car are a necessity. Try adjusting temperature or fan setting via a touch screen, especially a GLOSSY touch screen. Now compare to a simple illuminated button which you can ALWAYS see (and feel, and feel the feedback). It's like typing blind on a simulated keyboard on your tablet vs. on a "real" keyboard.

Should have made this first (2)

onyxruby (118189) | about a year ago | (#45114431)

Cadillac has picked up their game across the board from the ATS, CTS and the XTS with what has to be just about the greatest turn around of any automotive manufacture ever. I have every confidence that they will get this car right and that it will be worth the proverbial money. Hell, even Top Gear magazine (typically very Anti American) gave the ATS and new CTS high praise.

GM should have made this car before they made the Volt. People are far more likely to accept a pricier car at the luxury end of the segment (eco-sheek) than in the family segment where it is much harder to justify the price differential. Now the problem is that people will think of this as an expensive Volt and that may make it difficult to sell.

Re:Should have made this first (2)

Andy_R (114137) | about a year ago | (#45114647)

Spot on, simply swapping the launch dates would have made the Volt look like a cheap Cadillac, instead of the Cadillac looking like an overpriced Volt.

Flappy paddles? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114437)

What are those? Is that the technical term?

Re:Flappy paddles? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114925)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semi-automatic_transmission [slashdot.org] explains the whole system. The "flappy paddles" are the paddles found behind the steering wheel that allow you to shift gears.

Let's produce a crappy design... (1)

HangingChad (677530) | about a year ago | (#45114457)

...then we can pout and claim that Americans don't want electric cars.

Americans don't want your crappy electric cars, they want a Tesla.

When GM does something like this it just advertises that they're a dinosaur stuck in the tar pits of history.

Re:Let's produce a crappy design... (1)

amiga3D (567632) | about a year ago | (#45114715)

More proof that the market was right. GM was not too big to fail, it's too stupid to live.

Re:Let's produce a crappy design... (1)

ericloewe (2129490) | about a year ago | (#45115077)

I remember that my only experience with a Pontiac boiled down to: "What do you mean this car has no electronic stability control or ABS?".

The year must've been 2007 or something.

If one of their top brands didn't have such essential equipment, what did they do to their cheap ones? Were the engine blocks made of paper?

Re:Let's produce a crappy design... (1)

amiga3D (567632) | about a year ago | (#45115141)

It goes way back. Ross Perot summed it up in an interview with Fortune magazine back in the 80's.

http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/fortune_archive/1988/02/15/70199/ [cnn.com]

An excellent read. One excerpt....

"We've got to nuke the GM system. We've got to throw away Sloan's book ((My Years With General Motors, former chairman Alfred P. Sloan Jr.'s description of GM's management system)). It's like the Old Testament -- frozen thousands of years ago. We still believe that we can find the right page and paragraph to give us the answer to any question we have today. When you get down to the guys who actually have their hands on things, they know what to do. They can design, engineer, and build the best products in the world. My question is: Why haven't we unleashed their potential? The answer is: the General Motors system. It's like a blanket of fog that keeps these people from doing what they know needs to be done. I come from an environment where, if you see a snake, you kill it. At GM, if you see a snake, the first thing you do is go hire a consultant on snakes. Then you get a committee on snakes, and then you discuss it for a couple of years. The most likely course of action is -- nothing."

Unbelieveable.... (0)

David_Hart (1184661) | about a year ago | (#45114625)

It is unbelievable that this article is taken seriously. The writer refers to the shift paddles as "flappy paddles behind the steering wheel". This tells me that the person writing the article knows nothing about cars and did very little research to reach their conclusions.

If the author had been willing to do some actual research, instead of generating a fluff piece, we would have a comparison of the features between what's included with the Volt and the Cadillac version. Perhaps there are a few more things under the hood than a re-badged Volt.

http://www.topspeed.com/cars/cadillac/2014-cadillac-elr-ar128653.html [topspeed.com]

Re:Unbelieveable.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114803)

Flappy paddles is a quite common term for the levers used to shift semi-automatic gearboxes. It's even listed as a synonym on the wikipedia page.
I think I heard it being used most frequently by Jeremy Clarkson on Top Gear. He constantly derided paddle based shifters as"flappy paddles", but I think he is changing his view on the topic.

I won't even begin to delve into the Freudian psychology of a man who suggests that flappy paddle shifters are a limp wristed alternative to a true manual transmission, which involves a firm grasp on a knob attached to a rigid shaft projecting through the floor of the car.

Re:Unbelieveable.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114845)

It is unbelievable that you don't know that the shift paddles are actually called "flappy paddles". Go watch some Top Gear before you complain about motor journalism.

Re:Unbelieveable.... (1)

David_Hart (1184661) | about a year ago | (#45115165)

It is unbelievable that you don't know that the shift paddles are actually called "flappy paddles". Go watch some Top Gear before you complain about motor journalism.

Like top gear is serious motor journalism... I've watched a large number of Top Gear shows both the British and American versions and they have been nothing but entertainment TV. They are fun to watch, but there is very little actual content other than this car, that I can't afford, goes faster than that car, which I also can't afford...

They are not called flappy-paddles (i.e. not the technical term), this is just a cute term coined by Top Gear and is used by people who don't know better.

It's like wrist watches. (1)

mark_reh (2015546) | about a year ago | (#45114679)

There are a lot of people who spend $k to by a wrist watch even though there are perfectly good and accurate watches available for $20. Watches are functional jewelry. A lot of people avoid digital watches because they aren't usually very nice looking.

There is a large segment of the US population that regards cars not just as transportation, but also a statement about themselves. Cadillac has always been a prestige brand. People who buy Cadillacs aren't interested in diving a Chevy volt because Chevy is a blue-collar brand. The fact that it costs more than a Volt or Tesla makes it MORE attractive to Cadillac buyers.

Re:It's like wrist watches. (1)

WindBourne (631190) | about a year ago | (#45114751)

No. Caddy HAD a good reputation. At this time, the Model S takes on top-end caddies as well as this POS. I suspect that there will be fewer of these cars sold than of the volt. The volt actually has some redeeming value in being low costs. But not the caddy.

Re:It's like wrist watches. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114757)

Prestige? If you want prestige you buy Mercedes, BMW, Lamborghini, Ferrari, etc. You buy Cadillac if you are old.

Re:It's like wrist watches. (1)

mark_reh (2015546) | about a year ago | (#45115061)

You're forgetting the "buy American" mentality that affects so many. And yes, it is generally older people who buy Cadillacs, many of whom were left with impressions from WWII and would not drive a German or Japanese car. Also, since they are rather expensive, older people are the one's with the means to afford such a car.

GM and others are simply buying time (1)

WindBourne (631190) | about a year ago | (#45114737)

The fact is, that GM and other car companies are desperate to buy some time and push a fuel cell that uses nat gas, either directly or indirectly (for hydrogen). By the time that these companies have something worthwhile on fuel cells, Tesla, Nissan, and probably Chinese car companies, will be monster companies competing against them with real electric cars that have ultra-caps.

Re:GM and others are simply buying time (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | about a year ago | (#45115209)

Nissan is not a monster car company?

ultracaps aren't happening (1)

spage (73271) | about a year ago | (#45115331)

You made sense until your last word. Ultra-capacitors aren't happening. As batteries steadily get cheaper, you can use a bigger battery. A bigger battery can handle more power, so it can cope with more braking regen and recharge faster (and deliver more horsepower); and it's not cycled as much as a smaller battery, so it lasts longer. That reduces the fast-charge and longevity benefits of ultracaps, which are still far more expensive and heavier than a lithium-ion battery of the energy. Ionova claims 10 Wh/kg for their ultracaps while li-on is over 100 Wh/kg. In theory you can recharge an ultracap in seconds, but the future fast charger to recharge a Model S battery in a minute has to deliver 7000 amps at 500V instead of ~240 amps, so it's going to cost a fortune.

Ultracaps still have a chance in hybrids, the Prius only has a 1.3 kWh battery. Only price keeps ultracaps from replacing that battery. But again, as batteries get cheaper, more people will expect to be able to plug in.

Volt owner here... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114843)

GM should concentrate on making a better volt... Isn't the goal these days to do one thing right (twitter founder)?

Don't get me wrong, I love my Volt and I'm at +250mpg, but make the Volt a KILLER car, not only good...

My 2 cents.

As a Volt owner... (0)

Falc0n (618777) | about a year ago | (#45114951)

I'm pretty annoyed at people trying to compare the ELR or the Volt to a Tesla, or Leaf, or any other pure electric. The biggest reason why I wouldn't buy a Tesla is because total electrics are still impractical. If you look on the Tesla website, you'll see that I'm basically limited to a 300mile radius to where I live. This is because at 300 miles, it'll take 4:43 to charge my 85kw battery with the supercharger. Bump that down to a 240v outlet, and its a 9:26 charge. And thats after spending nearly 95k for the car, because the 70k version only goes about 200miles. There are some tricks to get 80% 'fairly quick', but you're still adding hours onto each segment of a roadtrip.

Which is where the volt comes in. For -most- people, they only need 30-50miles a day in their car. BUT, if you want to take a road-trip just 5 hours away, you're going to want a way to get there without spending 4 hours charging. And at $299/mo lease, its cost isn't much different than some nicer compacts of its class, and for everyday driving you spend nothing on fuel.

I'm -my- use case, and driving style (where I go) -- I think given the choice of a Tesla or ELR, I probably would go with the ELR. At least then I wouldn't have to buy another car so I could goto the beach, out camping where there is no power, or any of the other places the 'supercharger' grid hasn't made it yet. But in reality, the volt is nice on its own, I don't have any desire to pay another 35k to have a neat badge and a blocky-looking car. Don't get me wrong, I think the Tesla is a nice car, but without the gas generator, its a non-starter for me. Now put a little Diesel TDI generator in there, and I'd buy a Tesla in a heartbeat!

Re:As a Volt owner... (1)

Guspaz (556486) | about a year ago | (#45115145)

Errm, you're a bit off there. Rather than 4 hours and 43 minutes, a Tesla supercharger is rated at 20 minutes for 50%, 40 minutes for 80%, and 75 minutes for 100%. The other thing (for any plug-in hybrid or full electric) is to charge it overnight so that you start every day with a full charge. The automated battery swap would reduce that to a minute and a half, although those are similar in cost to a tank of gas. The 240v outlet is about right, although if you get an 80A one installed it's cut in half.

So, while I think that your idea about the practicality is wrong (a 5 hour drive would not require 4 hours of charging, but perhaps 20-30 minutes), I generally agree with the sentiment that the supercharger is not quite there yet. I think their 2015 projected map gets it most of the way there, which is probably good enough for long-distance driving for most people. I do hope that they continue to expand beyond that, though; it would also be useful to have the chargers *in* major cities. Not so much for people who live in those cities (because they can presumably charge overnight at home), but for visitors to the city; hotels don't usually have 240v ports to use, so it would be useful to get a full charge on the way out of the city.

So basically I'm saying "You're very wrong, but I generally agree with you that the infrastructure isn't there yet."

Target market fail (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about a year ago | (#45115239)

If you only have the resources to own a single vehicle, you're not the target market for ANY all electric.

As a side note, I find it impossible to imagine hauling a load of plywood in my Subaru sedan, 6 people and luggage to the beach in my truck, or take my minivan on snowy roads to go skiing. Amazingly, with three vehicles between me and my wife I can do all of those things *AND* average about 26-28 MPG combined on all the vehicles. It can't be done with a single vehicle, but that doesn't mean that any of the three are wholly impractical.

Regen on demand? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45114991)

I thought the whole point of regenerative breaking was to capture the energy lost to breaking. It should it be automatic? What's the point of a 'demand' paddle?

#irc.trool7alk.com (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45115043)

Vary for different same worthlees are having trouble

1981 All Over Again (1)

Oysterville (2944937) | about a year ago | (#45115057)

When GM came out with their first diesel car engine back in 1980-81, they basically took a gas V8 and did some minor tweaking to create the 1981 Old Toronado diesel. This car is widely considered to be one of the 10 worst in automotive history.

This reminds me of that.

"Hello, is that the 24 hour concierge?" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45115211)

"Hello, is that the 24 hour concierge?"

"Yes, speaking! How may I help you, sir?"

"This car is shit. Where can I trade it in for a Tesla?"

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