Following the German Big Three, the next luxury automaker to go on plug-in hybrid offensive will be Cadillac. The GM-owned high-end marque introduced its first mass-market PHEV Cadillac CT6 Plug-in Hybrid this year and plans to launch more such variants in the future. According to a report from Automotive News, the company plans to have plug-in hybrid variant of most of its models in coming years.
The plug-in hybrid aggression is, as one would expect, to adhere to stringent environment regulations that just keep getting tighter, as per the report. Additionally, incentives offered for electrified vehicles in major markets including targeted export markets liked China also call for this move. This plan was revealed to the publication by Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen on the sidelines of the 2015 LA Auto Show last week.
“For us, the avenue to ensure that we are able to play in China is going to be through plug-in hybrids,” Mr. de Nysschen said. The company isn’t in a rush to make a Tesla Model S-rivaling EV, because, Mr. de Nysschen explained, it doesn’t need electric vehicles to comply with the fuel economy and emissions regulations stateside. Its main rivals including Mercedes-Benz and BMW don’t have such a product either.
“That removes to some extent the immediate imperative” to make a Tesla rival, Mr. de Nysschen said. Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles are more practical than all-electric vehicles and do not cause range anxiety, in his opinion.
“We think that those cars (PHEVs) anyway offer the advantage that they effectively can be a full EV, but they are not subjected to the constraints of a still-immature charging infrastructure.” And so, “most” models of the line-up eventually will gain a plug-in hybrid variant.
None of this is to reflect that EVs are completely ruled out though. EV is also on the cards, but “just on the longer horizon”.
“Once we’ve covered all the bases, then we’ll turn our eye to doing a full EV. It’s definitely not something I exclude,” he said.
[Source: Automotive News]