Cadillac has shipped the first batch of CT6 Plug-In Hybrids to the US and sales start this month.
The CT6 uses a lithium-ion battery pack that shares technology with the packs used for years in the Chevrolet Volt and the discontinued Cadillac ELR. It provides 31 miles of full-electric range before the gas engine kicks in.
The CT6 Plug-In starts at $75,095 plus $995 destination (similar to the ELR) though in the much larger package of the big sedan. This places this version of the CT6 at $15000 over the gas-only version. This seems somewhat reasonable when you account for unique instrument cluster, inclusion of of a unique transmission that integrates dual electric motors, in addition to the 18.4kWh battery pack.
For most owners, this means a CT6 with the power of the 3.6l V6 but that won’t burn a drop of gas in most day-to-day driving. It also provides the benefits of a gasoline powered (virtually unlimited range) for the few times when a long drive is desired.
For a reminder of the technology in the CT6 Plug-In- We’ve included Cadillac’s informative press release from late 2016 below:
NEW YORK – Cadillac has added an available Plug-In propulsion system to its range-topping CT6 sedan. The new Plug-In system more than doubles the fuel economy of the conventional powertrain offerings.
The CT6 PLUG-IN takes advantage of the car’s advanced lightweight structure to create a unique formula for the prestige sedan.
“The first-ever CT6 is a technological showcase throughout, making it an ideal platform for Cadillac to offer its first plug-in,” said Cadillac President Johan de Nysschen. “In the CT6, Cadillac presents a new formula for prestige luxury. The advanced Plug-In system is a key addition, providing a combination of exceptional fuel economy, crisp acceleration and strong electric-driving range.”
The CT6 PLUG-IN system is designed to provide all-electric driving for most daily commutes, while maximizing fuel efficiency by providing blended power from the engine and battery at higher speeds and higher loads, even when energy is stored in the battery.
The CT6 PLUG-IN leverages General Motors’ proven battery technology. An 18.4 kWh lithium-ion battery pack is located between the rear seat and the trunk. The battery system is comprised of 192 prismatic pouch cells, which use the latest generation cell chemistry found in other GM plug-in vehicles.
With industry-leading quality levels of fewer than two problems per million battery cells produced, more than 20 million battery cells have been made for more than 73,000 GM plug-ins on the road today. The CT6 PLUG-IN battery system will use the company’s proven active thermal control system that maintains electric range over the battery system’s life.
The battery system can be charged using a 120V or 240V charger, and will charge in approximately 4.5 hours on the latter voltage. The vehicle is rated by the EPA for a combined driving range of 440 miles, an all-electric range of 31 miles and a combined city/highway fuel economy rating of 62 MPGe.
Electric Variable Transmission Delivers Exceptional Performance
All-electric launch performance is one of the key purchase considerations for plug-in and EV owners. The Cadillac CT6 PLUG-IN combines an all-new rear wheel electric variable transmission (EVT) with exclusively designed motors to provide smooth, spirited acceleration.
The two-motor EVT also uses three planetary gears and is mated to a 2.0L turbo 4-cylinder engine with spark-ignited direct injection and variable valve technology. The use of a two-motor system provides smooth and seamless power through the entire driving range.
The combined system is capable of producing total system power of 335 hp (250 kW) and 432 lb-ft (586 Nm) of torque.
“The CT6 PLUG-IN will deliver exceptional smooth, responsive acceleration that Cadillac and luxury sedan owners demand,” said Travis Hester, Cadillac CT6 executive chief engineer. “We have managed to achieve superior drive quality when compared to our plug-in competitors due to our exclusively designed EVT.”
The CT6 PLUG-IN will feature iBooster and Electronic Stability Program tailored for hybrid electric vehicle regenerative blended braking to provide maximum energy recovery combined with reduced stopping distance and improved fuel economy over traditional regenerative braking systems.
The iBooster and ESP-hev technology balance the use of the CT6 electric motors to act as generators to slow the vehicle and capture as much kinetic energy as possible during low-demand scenarios, while blending the traditional hydraulic brakes with the motors in high-demand scenarios.
As expected from a driver’s car like the CT6, the system provides improved brake pedal feel and enables increased opportunity for engine stop-start operation.
Operating Modes and Regen on Demand
CT6 PLUG-IN drivers will be able to select among three distinct operating modes: Normal, Sport and Hold.
Normal: Designed for everyday commuting. Provides ideal balance of comfort, performance and maximized EV range and fuel economy.
Sport: Provides more aggressive pedal mapping for improved off-the-line feel and a stiffer steering response.
Hold: Allows owners to select when the CT6 PLUG-IN uses its engine, reserving the remaining battery charge for later use. This feature helps enhance efficiency because owners who mix city and highway driving can save the battery charge for city travel, where the CT6 EV mode operates most efficiently.
The CT6 PLUG-IN will also feature Regen on Demand, which allows the driver to temporarily regenerate energy from vehicle momentum into electricity and store in the battery pack for later use.
Regen on Demand supports a more-engaging driving experience by slowing the vehicle when entering a turn to better position it on the exit, much like downshifting with a manual transmission. Regen on Demand is engaged via steering-wheel paddles adapted from traditional performance cars.
The CT6 PLUG-IN also features four driver-selectable modes, with increasing amounts of brake regeneration. The strongest regen mode allows drivers to control the vehicle through one-pedal driving in many traffic situations.