The very idea of a luxury car used to be synonymous with a big hulking sedan or SUV that declared your net worth through its outsize footprint. But then along came the Prius, driven by the likes of Tom Hanks and Leo DiCaprio. And then there’s the fact that city dwellers, the richest consumers out there, never found big cars terribly convenient.
Cadillac has now jumped on those twin societal trends, and produced a city-car concept that’s meant to be as luxurious as it is small.
The Cadillac Urban Luxury Concept , unveiled yesterday at the L.A. Auto Show, is filled with technology meant to make a car that’s no bigger than a Smart Car feel spacious on the inside. Touchscreens replace all the interior controls, thus allowing the dashboard to be far more compact. To make it easy to enter and exit the car, both doors scissor open. And, in a clever hook for parents working on their first child, the back seats fold down to reveal a dock for the Orbit car seat.
The car would be powered by a hybrid powerplant: a turbocharged 1.0L three-cylinder engine that has brake energy regeneration similar to that in the Prius. According to Cadillac, based on their prototyping models, the car would fetch a fuel economy of 56 mpg in the city and 65 mpg on the highway. The lines, meanwhile, are definitely drawn from those you’d find on the Escalade or CTS — tough, angular, and svelte: