GM just officially unveiled their Converj extended-range electric vehicle. The two-door coupe looks like the kind of luxury sports car that will support the extra price of the E-Flex system (the Volt will be sold at a loss) but still deliver a 40 mile, pure-electric range.
And I don't generally report on styling, but it is a good looking car.
There's no word on a production date, but (if it gets made at all) we probably can't expect it before 2012. The car is built on the same platform as the Volt, with a stack of lithium ion batteries to hold a charge for the first 40 miles, and a small gasoline generator to re-charge the batteries after that 40 miles.
So, since the average commuter drives less than 40 miles per day, the car could be drive its whole life without ever using gasoline. Of course, if you need to go on vacation, extended-range EVs allow for that, letting you basically "recharge" with gasoline. At that point, it's not that green, but it is a lot more convenient than running out of juice and being stuck in the middle of nowhere.
The Converj is trying to be the kind of luxury car people want regardless of the drive train, and the hope of General Motors is that people will see the electric drive train as just one more compelling reason to spend $50 or $60k on a Cadillac. And, frankly, if I had $60k to spend on a car, I could see spending it here.
written by MeredithC, January 12, 2009
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