General Motors' increasingly empty coffers could consign the Cadillac Converj show car to 'concept only' status. The Detroit Auto Show coupe has been the subject of production rumors since before it rolled onto the stage in Cobo earlier last week, but now Automotive News is reporting that GM may not have enough money to make Converj a reality.
AN quotes GM vice chairman Bob Lutz as saying that the Converj is far from a done deal:
"Ready to go? Well, first we have to prove to ourselves that we have the money... and then that it's a high enough priority to displace something else, and that we can actually make money on the vehicle, and that there is potential customer interest and so forth. We haven't done any of that work yet."Our take? The angularly gorgeous Cadillac was designed around the same extended-range Voltec architecture as Chevrolet's forthcoming Volt, itself a spectacularly expensive research and development effort. GM is clearly committed to making the Volt a production reality, and if it ever has hopes of making money on its plug-in hybrid technology, a higher-priced, higher-margin product like from an upper-crust brand like Cadillac would seem like one of the best ways to defray R&D costs. In short, GM may still have to conduct due diligence on the Converj's business case, but if there's any money at all left in the company's bank accounts, we still think the future for the showstopper is a bright one. Given the 2011 date attached to the Volt, we would expect the Caddy to roll into showrooms for 2012.
Let's just hope it arrives in showrooms wearing a new name.