Too High a Price Would Be the Kiss of Death for Cadillac’s Lyriq: GM North America Prez

Steve Carlisle, whose job title was recently upgraded to president of GM’s North American operations, knows you can’t market emissions-free driving on novelty alone. The former Cadillac brand boss offered a hint about the window sticker affixed to the upcoming Cadillac Lyriq electric SUV on Wednesday, citing a need for competitive pricing.

The Lyriq, which this writer can’t seem to spell correctly the first time, is Caddy’s first EV. The first of many, too. Entering production in late 2022 as a 2023 model, the midsize Lyriq’s price won’t be stratospheric, Carlisle claims.

Speaking at the JP Morgan Auto Conference, Carlisle said, “We need to be in the same price zone” of similar-sized premium products of the gas-friendly variety, Automotive News reports.

“This car will need to be priced similar to how the industry prices midsize lux SUVs today, maybe a slight premium at the outset. It’s a price that won’t be high five digits. It won’t start with a seven and it won’t start with a six.”

Carlisle’s comments suggest the Lyriq will bow with a starting price similar to that of the C8 Corvette, if not lower. The closest existing product in Caddy’s lineup is the midsize XT5, which starts at a little more than $45,000 after destination.

Go too high, and buyers will start to wonder if maybe a new Escalade would give them more panache for their hard-earned bucks. Of course, there’ll be an electric version of that hulking full-sizer, too, though not until the Lyriq is already on the market for a while. General Motors plans five electric Cadillacs, each with a name ending in “iq.”

Each GM division will field electric models under the automaker’s new directive, but Cadillac plans to offer something for everyone, including a comparatively low-priced compact model.

“We’re putting extraordinary efforts here into creating conditions for adoption,” Carlisle said. “Every indication is that consumers are getting increasingly ready. It takes a whole ecosystem approach.”

Those customers will have time to get ready, given Cadillac’s decision to reveal a near production-ready example so far out from the Lyriq’s on-sale date. That said, the Lyriq is said to deliver 300 miles or so of all-electric range, which is something the newest German EV crossovers can’t claim.

a version of this article first appeared on TTAC