The newly-revealed Cadillac Lyriq is the company's first ever fully-electric SUV. Built on all-new architecture, and promising to be a rebirth for the storied brand, this is going to be an important car for General Motors. Not only is it unlike any Cadillac that came before, it's also the end of the internal combustion engine.
Literally, because Cadillac CP Rory Harvey has confirmed the company is going all electric from now on. Or at least it will be in the United States. Here's everything you need to know about the Cadillac Lyriq, including details on price, release dates, range, performance, self-driving, and more.
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Cadillac Lyriq: Release date and pricing
While Cadillac was tight-lipped on pricing for a while, it's now revealed that the 2023 Lyriq will be available in late 2022, with reservations opening this September. Prices will start at a very competitive $59,990. That undercuts the Tesla Model X by $20,000.
Of course, that's just the base trim level. Cadillac will surely charge more for extra amenities. That includes Cruise, General Motors self-driving technology that's directly competing with Tesla's Autopilot. And like with Tesla, it will be an added cost for buyers. How much remains to be seen.
Cadillac Lyriq: Range, battery and performance
Cadillac claims a 300-mile range for the Lyriq's 100 kWh battery, which is on par with the Performance version of the Tesla Model X, though about 50 miles short of the Long Range Plus configuration of Tesla's larger crossover.
The core of that long-range power comes from GM's new Ultium battery architecture, which is based around using the smallest number of the highest capacity battery cells. Cadillac claims this approach will keeps costs relatively low. And because it's modular, the battery will likely inform the rest of GM's EV offerings, across various bodystyles.
“Thanks to the modular and highly flexible Ultium Platform that powers Lyriq, along with advanced virtual development tools, Cadillac has been able to accelerate development and put more real-world miles on prototypes sooner than expected,” said Lyriq Chief Engineer Jamie Brewer in a press release.
The Ultium battery system is also said to be an integral aspect of the Lyriq's structure, which should help vehicle rigidity and thus, overall performance. It helps the Lyriq attain a perfectly balanced 50/50 weight distribution, and keeps the center of gravity low for better cornering. There will be both an all-wheel drive version featuring dual motors as well as a rear-wheel drive variant.
The Lyriq supports both Level 1 and Level 2 AC charging up to 19kW, for home charging, and public DC fast charging up to 150kW. Those speeds mean you should be able to reclaim 76 miles of range after just 10 minutes of charging.
GM has also partnered with EVgo to supply Lyriq owners with a national charging network, and EVgo is equipped for DC fast charging.
Cadillac Lyriq: Design and interior
From a distance, the Cadillac Lyriq is an attractive two-row SUV, though not a particularly unique-looking one within Cadillac's stable of large, angular vehicles. It's only when you approach the Lyriq that you learn this isn't your ordinary Cadillac.
The grille, lights and emblem are adorned with LEDs that turn on as you walk toward the car, cluing you into the Lyriq's futuristic focus. And the raked back lends sportier lines to the Lyriq that distinguishes it from traditional, boxier SUVs, with massive taillights that extend 2 feet into the C-pillar. The Lyriq rides on large 22-inch wheels, and the long and wide stance gives it an especially imposing appearance.
Inside, the Lyriq's dash is dominated by a massive 33-inch display extending from where you'd normally encounter the driver's instrument cluster all the way past the center. The steering wheel isn't made up of buttons at all — controls are lit on a piano black surface with LEDs, and scroll wheels and knobs are festooned with knurled edges, lending an appropriately premium aesthetic.
One of the Lyriq's most interesting and distinctive interior details is its "jewelry box" storage tray underneath the center stack, which gently reveals itself and is lined with blue fabric. In GM's reveal video, there was a smartphone inside the tray, perhaps indicating that this space can wirelessly charge your devices.
Cadillac Lyriq: Super Cruise self driving and special features
The Lyriq will sport Cadillac's Super Cruise autonomous driving technology, which is already available in the marque's newest models, including the 2021 Escalade. Super Cruise is currently classified as a "Level 2" system, meaning drivers must still remain attentive to what's happening on the road in front of them, though they may remove their hands from the wheel when conditions allow it.
By the time the Lyriq reaches showrooms, however, Super Cruise could graduate to Level 3 autonomy, which won't require eyes-on driving all of the time. The Lyriq is equipped with technology to make automated lane changes, and will be able to remotely park itself as well.
The Lyriq's heads-up display utilizes augmented reality and benefits from information provided by the car's assisted driving sensors. That means that when executing a lane change, for example, the heads-up display can show an arrow atop the road from your perspective demonstrating the action the vehicle is about to take before it commences on its path.
In terms of interior sound, the Lyriq will employ a 19-speaker system co-engineered with AKG.
Cadillac Lyriq: Outlook
The road to production for the Lyriq is long, and so it could be a while before Cadillac reveals information like pricing, hard performance figures, and more granular options. Not only that, Cadillac is seeing increased competition in the luxury EV SUV space by the likes of Mercedes with its EQS, Audi with its Q4 e-tron and Volvo with its lower-priced Polestar 2.
That said, the Lyriq is certainly a vehicle we, and likely the rest of the world, will be watching closely. It represents where the automotive industry is headed — not simply in terms of electrification, but also interior technology, self-driving and design. Watch this space, as we'll continue to update this hub with news on the Lyriq as it becomes available.