I’ve come to Park City, Utah to see the longer term. The way forward for Cadillac, that’s.
General Motors’ flagship model has lengthy billed itself “the standard of the world,” but, regardless of a handful of sizzling merchandise, it’s been troublesome to take that declare severely in current many years. But in some methods, Cadillac is on the point of begin over.
As I pull as much as my lodge, I get a primary glimpse of what that future will likely be. The 2023 Cadillac Lyriq boasts probably the most distinctive designs of any new automobile set to return out this yr. And that displays its position as the posh model’s first all-electric mannequin, positioning Cadillac for the dramatic transition to battery energy already beginning to reshape the auto business total.
But does it provide greater than putting beauty? That’s what I’ve come to Park City to search out out, with Cadillac handing me the keys to one of many first Lyriq crossovers. I count on to study a lot throughout the subsequent two days behind the wheel.
The 2023 Cadillac Lyriq is the posh model’s most essential product in many years. It’s not solely Caddy’s first battery-electric automobile however units in movement a deliberate shift that may see it abandon inside combustion engines totally by 2030.
Lyriq is on no account the one new BEV concentrating on upscale patrons. The market is rapidly getting crowded with choices from each established luxurious manufacturers and new entrants. And, in fact, there’s Tesla which nonetheless holds a 75% share of the general electrical automobile market. But the brand new Cadillac does have quite a bit going for.
Its designers have pushed the envelope with a putting exterior that’s way more distinctive than the equally priced Tesla Model Y. Lyriq’s cabin is each roomy and lavishly appointed. It boasts the type of consideration to element that we haven’t seen from Cadillac in many years.
While it’s neither the quickest nor strongest product in its section, Lyriq delivers good efficiency and considerably higher vary – an EPA-estimated 312 miles per cost — than many competing entries, such because the Audi e-tron, Jaguar I-Pace and Polestar 2. While initially supplied with a single, rear-mounted electrical motor, a twin-motor all-wheel-drive model will launch early in 2023 and ship extra energy and improved efficiency.
And the Cadillac Lyriq is loaded up with an array of high-tech options, together with the newest model of mother or father General Motors’ semi-autonomous Super Cruise system, which lets a motorist function hands-free on greater than 200,000 miles of U.S. roadways.
In some methods, the 2023 Cadillac Lyriq jogs my memory of the previous Caddy SRX, the model’s unique crossover. That’s not meant as faint reward. I really preferred the extra wagon-like proportions of the SRX and impressed that Cadillac designers adopted their very own muse when it got here to the proportions of their new battery-electric crossover. It’s a bit extra fastback than lots of the different midsize SUVs, electrical or fuel. And that solely enhances Lyriq’s visible power and dynamics.
As with most of immediately’s BEVs, Lyriq makes use of a brand new skateboard-style “architecture,” shifting batteries and drivetrain under the load ground in a devoted all-electric platform. That interprets right into a shorter nostril and minimal overhangs. The coupe-like roofline, in the meantime, curves right into a flow-through rear spoiler. Aerodynamics clearly performed a central position within the crossover’s design, serving to to maximise vary and efficiency by minimizing drag.
Driving round Park City, the Lyriq clearly drew a number of consideration, and the face of the brand new SUV is a key motive. Like different new BEVs, designers put a premium on lighting – right here selecting up on basic Caddy DNA with slender vertical LED high and low beams. But the standout element is Lyriq’s grille.
That’s really a little bit of an oxymoron on the planet of electrical autos. With the powertrain migrating to the decrease a part of Lyriq’s platform, there’s no have to ship cooling air into an engine compartment. So, the crossover will get a sealed nostril that includes a blackened piece of glass with diagonal, laser-etched stripes. They seem like silver accents by day, however are strikingly backlit at night time.
One of the advantages of utilizing a skateboard-style platform is the best way it frees up area usually dedicated to an engine compartment. While Lyriq doesn’t provide the frunk, or entrance trunk, discovered on some competing merchandise, it boasts class-above passenger area. That helps clarify why Cadillac determined to modify from the four-passenger format of the unique Lyriq idea to the five-seat manufacturing model.
There’s no transmission tunnel, so Lyriq will get a flat load ground enhancing rear seat roominess — with as a lot as 40 inches of legroom in again. And regardless of the coupe-like roofline, I had no hassle planting my 6’2” body on the bench with out banging my head. Up entrance, an enormous heart console drops in between driver and passenger, with greater than sufficient area for a big purse or laptop bag.
The cabin will get a decidedly high-tech really feel, with the instrument panel dominated by a custom-designed 33-inch LED show that serves double-duty as gauge cluster and infotainment touchscreen. The latter system handles just about all automobile features, even the glovebox launch, minimizing typical controls. I did run into some issues with this expertise, nevertheless, as I’ll clarify shortly.
Lyriq boasts a two-level ambient lighting system that additionally will be managed from the touchscreen. You can dial in some fairly wild shade mixtures — or let the automobile set its personal, with particular selections relying upon your driving mode.
Yet, in sharp distinction with Tesla merchandise, there’s a basic heat and refinement that harkens again to one of the best Cadillac has carried out — certainly, to a stage of favor and craftsmanship the posh model has struggled to realize in current many years. The few remaining knobs function refined knurling. There are open-pore wooden accents. And, certainly one of my favourite particulars requires a more in-depth take a look at the speaker grilles. By day, you’ll spot a metallic foil underlayer. At night time, the skinny metallic really glows because of artistic backlighting.
During the subsequent a number of years, count on to see Cadillac roll out a collection of Lyriq variants. Initially, nevertheless, it’s supplied in a rear-wheel-drive configuration. It attracts energy from a 100 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion pack utilizing General Motors’ next-generation Ultium batteries – which the automaker claims are smaller, lighter and cheaper to supply than these it has been utilizing in its first long-range BEV, the Chevrolet Bolt.
The single-motor system produces 340 horsepower and 324 pound-feet of torque, GM claiming that may launch the electrical SUV from 0 to 60 in about 6.5 seconds. As is the case with electrical autos, Lyriq’s motor delivers 100% of its peak torque the second it begins spinning, yielding an acceleration really feel that appears considerably sooner than what the launch instances would counsel.
Around November, Cadillac plans so as to add a two-motor, all-wheel-drive model of the Lyriq — which can go on sale in early 2023. That model will take the horse rely as much as 550, whereas elevating torque to no less than 440 lb-ft. The AWD bundle will have the ability to tow up 3,700 kilos, as nicely.
As with all BEVs, Lyriq makes use of a compound brake system — which blends each typical friction brakes and the power to seize, or “regenerate,” power usually misplaced throughout braking and coasting. This is returned to the battery and helps lengthen vary. Lyriq presents a number of ranges of regenerative braking, together with a One-Pedal Mode. It feels very similar to downshifting a handbook transmission a number of gears. But it permits a driver to modulate the throttle and keep away from leaping back-and-forth from accelerator to brake in lots of conditions.
Cadillac added a novel twist within the type of the ROD, or regeneration-on-demand, paddle on the steering wheel. A driver can squeeze it throughout braking to additional improve the extent of regen braking. Normally, One-Pedal Mode reaches a most 0.30 Gs when a driver lifts off the throttle. Fully activated, ROD can convey that as much as 0.35 Gs. During my time behind the wheel I discovered I virtually by no means really had to make use of my Lyriq’s brakes.
Lyriq’s single-motor RWD mannequin is EPA-rated to ship an estimated 312 miles per cost. When the battery runs down, a motorist can use a conveyable charger that comes with the automobile. At 240 volts and seven kilowatts, it would return 21 miles per hour to the battery per hour. That jumps to 37 at 11 kW. And a completely put in, 100-amp charger can bump that to 52 miles per hour.
With one of many latest super-fast public chargers able to delivering 190 kW at 400 volts, Lyriq can add 76 miles of vary in 10 minutes, based on Caddy.
Safety and Technology
The 2023 Cadillac Lyriq presents an array of high-tech options, beginning with its distinctive exterior and inside lighting system. Motorists can individually customise higher and decrease cabin lighting utilizing the SUV’s infotainment system.
That bundle adopts the brand new Google working system and provides options like cloud-based navigation and the power to obtain smartphone-style over-the-air updates. Motorists can use wi-fi variations of each Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and there’s an onboard WiFi hotspot, in addition to Qi wi-fi charging.
An lively noise cancelation system helps ship all however full silence within the cabin. But you possibly can activate the unreal sound generator, should you want, the automotive creating aural suggestions matched to acceleration. And Lyriq is obtainable with a spectacular AKG audiophile sound system.
A 33-inch, fully custom-made digital show dominates Lyriq’s instrument panel, changing all however a handful of typical knobs and switches. Caddy might have gone a step too far, nevertheless. Opening the glovebox is a three-step course of utilizing the infotainment display. A easy button or mechanical launch could be a way more efficient, if conventional, resolution.
It was laborious to guage the infotainment system, because the pre-production prototype Cadillac supplied had not had the newest management software program replace. It suffered from quite a lot of glitches, together with an entire, albeit transient, display blackout. The automaker warned me of the issue earlier than I headed out and claims new software program updates will likely be activated earlier than the primary autos are delivered to prospects.
The electrical crossover additionally will get quite a lot of superior driver help methods, comparable to General Motors’ hands-free Super Cruise expertise. It possible received’t be out there by the point the primary Lyriqs land in showrooms however will likely be activated utilizing an over-the-air software program replace later this yr.
Lyriq isn’t any match for the high-performance model of the Tesla Model Y, no less than should you’re going to play boy racer each time the stoplight turns inexperienced. That stated, most drivers ought to discover the preliminary, rear-drive model of the Caddy crossover greater than fast sufficient.
Unfortunately, I didn’t have the chance to run a stopwatch but it surely definitely appeared to beat Caddy’s 0-60 estimate of 6.5 seconds. And whether or not you’re attempting to merge onto a freeway or make a high-speed cross, there’s loads of energy to tug it off.
I clocked about 150 miles with the 2023 Cadillac Lyriq on a mixture of freeways and native roads — together with some actually difficult routes by way of twisty, mountainous terrain. Lyriq delivered just about all the pieces I requested of it. The solely — slight — weak spot: the custom-designed tires are geared toward balancing grip and power effectivity, so they may slide a wee bit within the extra aggressive corners. But the crossover’s low heart of gravity and excellent 50:50 weight distribution definitely enhanced the general driving expertise.
While Super Cruise hasn’t been activated within the Lyriq but, I’ve skilled the Level 2+ semi-autonomous system in a number of GM autos in current weeks, together with the brand new Cadillac Escalade-V. It’s spectacular expertise, able to working hands-free on greater than 200,000 miles of limited-access roadways within the U.S. Better but, Lyriq will get the latest model, able to mechanically executing a cross when it comes up behind a slower shifting automobile, the place circumstances enable.
Lyriq is without doubt one of the sooner BEVs available on the market with regards to charging, although can’t sustain with charging velocity kings just like the Porsche Cayenne and Kia EV6. But it does add one thing potential patrons may respect. For those that wish to set up a house charger, the Caddy EV will provide $1,500 to assist offset the price. Alternatively, patrons can go for two years of free, limitless charging utilizing the rising EVgo community.
There’s no query that the 2023 Cadillac Lyriq carries a steep value. After taking a restricted variety of orders for the $59,990 First Edition bundle late final yr, Caddy bumped the beginning value to $62,990 — together with supply charges. And the all-wheel-drive bundle coming early subsequent yr will begin at $64,990. By comparability, the gas-powered Cadillac XT5 begins at $44,195, the XT6 at $48,595 — although neither is almost as well-equipped.
Another essential comparability: the Tesla Model Y begins at $65,990 — and it’s not practically as well-equipped. Nor is it anyplace close to as engaging a product, each inside and outside. That was underscored by a pair of conversations I had throughout my transient time in Park City, one with a present Model Y proprietor, the opposite with somebody simply on the lookout for a luxurious BEV. Both reacted warmly to the brand new Lyriq, whereas downplaying the Tesla design.
Anecdotally, I’m sensing a rising stage of “Tesla Fatigue.” That’s one thing that may open alternatives not just for Cadillac however different luxurious entrants, comparable to Genesis, Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz as they develop their very own BEV line-ups.
Of all the brand new fashions, nevertheless, Cadillac has give you probably the most strikingly trendy. It’s acquired loads of fascinating expertise, presents good — if not benchmark — efficiency and vary, and is simply plain enjoyable to drive.
The automaker claims it has already bought out the 2023 mannequin yr and can quickly open the order financial institution for 2024. Based on my time with the brand new Cadillac Lyriq, I count on that run will promote out fairly rapidly, as nicely.
2023 Cadillac Lyriq — Frequently Asked Questions
What is the vary of the Cadillac Lyriq?
With the preliminary, rear-wheel-drive model of the 2023 Cadillac Lyriq, the EPA has given a spread estimate of 312 miles. The extra highly effective all-wheel-drive model is predicted to get a decrease ranking.
How a lot does the 2023 Cadillac Lyriq price?
Early prospects may order the Lyriq First Edition for $59,990. Before the 2023 mannequin bought out, that jumped to $62,990 in May. The all-wheel-drive bundle coming early subsequent yr will go for $64,990. When the order financial institution reopens for the 2023 mannequin costs may go up, as they’ve recently for different EVs.
Where is the Cadillac Lyriq constructed?
For North America, the 2023 Cadillac Lyriq is assembled on the General Motors plant in Spring Hill, Tennessee. The Asian mannequin is being constructed at Yantai, China.