As we reported last week, GM is set to allocate more resources for the Cadillac brand now that Hummer, Pontiac, Saab and Saturn are on their way out - and that information gives this rumor a little bit of credibility.
An unnamed, "well-placed" source, says GM executives have approved development of the Cadillac Converj that was unveiled in January at the 2009 International Auto Show. If that news isn't enough, there's more: GM wants to be pushing the production Converj into the market by 2011 as a 2012 model.
Bob Lutz, the former GM Vice Chairman of Global Product Development, said in February that any production-ready Converj would have morph from a coupe into a sedan for marketing reasons; sedans are easier to sell than coupes. Motor Trend's source says executives have ditched that plan, and want to see the Converj brought to production as a coupe.
The Converj concept was built using GM's Voltec architecture, the same underpinnings as the 2011 Chevrolet Volt. Both concepts use a lithium-ion battery to power the car, with a 1.4-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine onboard to keep the battery going when it runs out of juice. In all likelihood, GM will increase the size of the battery to give the Cadillac more power, but it'll be interesting to see how it will deal with the extra weight a bigger battery demands.
After the Converj, Motor Trend's source says a people-mover based on the Voltec platform is next. The CUV could go to either Buick or GMC, and could be built as a smaller vehicle on top of the same Delta-based iteration of Voltec that the Volt and Converj use, or move up to the Epsilon II midsize platform.
A GM spokesperson has, of course, denied that the Converj has been given the green-light, saying nothing has changed in regards to its prospects for production. Regardless of whether or not Motor Trend's source proves to be correct, GM's entire product plan hinges on whether or not the company stays solvent. With only taxpayer dollars in its coffers at the moment, GM can only afford to place its bets on sure shots like the Chevrolet Cruze.
Here's hoping GM can survive until 2011 and bring the Cadillac Converj to the masses.
Source: Motor Trend