What constitutes an “entry-level” electric vehicle? Is the description an indication of the size of a given vehicle, or does it have to do more with the price point relative to an automaker’s other forays into the realm of EVs? Depending on the marque in question, it could be either or both. It’s one of the side effects of a time when SUVs and crossovers dominate the automotive landscape — at least in the U.S. (See also: the lingering question of whether or not VinFast will bring its VF3 to the United States.)
This weekend, Cadillac offered its own answer to that question with the announcement that its Optiq electric vehicle would be available beginning in 2024. Cadillac’s announcement was relatively low on details, revealing primarily that this new vehicle “will act as the entry point for Cadillac’s EV lineup in North America, slotting in below LYRIQ, a luxury compact SUV.”
As Business Insider pointed out in their reporting, that gives Cadillac some wiggle room when it comes to pricing; the cost of a Lyriq starts at $58,590. What the pricing for the Optiq might look like isn’t yet clear — though Cadillac’s announcement does state that its “spirited driving dynamics are designed to appeal to global luxury customers.”
Cadillac Reveals the All-Electric Escalade IQThe famous luxury SUV is reimagined as an EV and promises more than 400 miles of range
Questions of adoption and affordability continue to surround electric vehicles in the United States. Writing at Road & Track earlier this year, Brian Silvestro noted of the Chevrolet Bolt EV that “[i]it’s tough enough to find any new car under $30,000, much less a long range EV.” And the dwindling options for car buyers looking for something under $20,000 in the U.S. remains an issue.
If the future of automobiles is indeed electric — and a lot of automakers have bet big that it is — that’s going to need to apply to luxury models and more modest vehicles alike. It remains to be seen whether or not the Optiq will help in bridging that gap.
This article was featured in the InsideHook newsletter. Sign up now.