2025 Cadillac Optiq Debuts As Compact Luxury Electric For The Whole World

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky

General Motors’ luxury arm has just previewed the Cadillac Optic — which looks to be offering a tad more utility than the brand’s larger Lyriq EV. While it debuted in Paris, the model is to become a global model and suit the taste of luxury-minded consumers the world over.


“Cadillac has always defined American luxury, and Optiq is an example of how our bold, innovative spirit is propelling us into the EV future,” stated John Roth, vice president, Global Cadillac. “Over the past five years, Cadillac has welcomed approximately 1 million new customers to the family globally, while our percentage of younger buyers has increased 5 [percent] in the U.S. Optiq will be an important gateway to attract luxury EV intenders to Cadillac as we look to offer a fully electric portfolio by the end of the decade.”

The manufacturer appears to have gone to great lengths to hide any obvious plastic components, as they’re all masked with interesting patterns or covered in softer materials. The cabin was obviously modeled off classic luxury vehicles and hybridized with modern design cues. It actually looks pretty good when the massive, 33-inch screen is idle. But, when active, it dominates the space and robs it of some of that good taste.


While it’s ultimately a matter of opinion, large screens remain polarizing. Some undoubtedly still see them as on the cutting edge. But they’re broadly unpopular in terms of driver-satisfaction surveys and the user interface rarely looks any higher end than what you’d find displayed on your cell phone. Your author would argue that the novelty of screen-heavy interiors have worn off at this point and will look dated far sooner than their more-analog counterparts.

Otherwise, the Optiq isn’t a bad looking vehicle (inside or out) and very obviously a Cadillac product and has retained a fair number of physical buttons. The only real surprise is the fabric seats that come with the car. Though they don’t look bad either and can be replaced.


The manufacturer has said that the model comes with an 85-kilowatt-hour battery pack and dual motor all-wheel drive. Cadillac is expecting 300 horsepower and 354 lb-ft of instantaneous torque on production models. While the vehicle does weigh a hefty 5,192 pounds, that should be sufficient to whisk the vehicle up to highway speeds faster than most compact crossovers. Even if EVs do have a tendency to lose some steam as they approach the kind of speeds that could get you into trouble with Johnny Law, the run up to that point is often quite brisk.

One pedal driving will be available, as will a slew of customizable drive modes. Cadillac was also keen to point out the Optiq’s fixed-glass roof, laser-etched and illuminated grille, and a bevy of little touches to make the vehicle’s exterior stand out (e.g. choreographed lighting when you approach the vehicle).


Optiq models are also compatible with DC fast charging, which Cadillac said can add “up to 79 miles of range in about 10 minutes.” That doesn’t really paint a full picture of the vehicle’s charging capabilities beyond the ideal scenario. Digging a little deeper, we can see the 240-volt solution will still take hours to fully recharge the vehicle. But, with the dual-level charge cord that comes with the car, drivers will have plenty of options and will benefit from the vehicle’s 400-volt architecture. Range is estimated to be around 300 miles until the EPA says otherwise.

Features are a bit of a mystery, as Cadillac hasn’t outlined the full range of options available on the Optiq. But the company has said there will be two trims — Luxury and Sport — and noted that the car comes with a robust sensor array. All of the latest safety and driver assistance technologies should be available and so will Super Cruise. Sadly, that last bit includes a “driver attention system” that plenty of people just won’t want in the cabin if they value their privacy. 


The manufacturer went to some length to point out how much recycled material has gone into the vehicle. But it’s hard to say whether that’s a bonus or negative for individual readers. Recycled plastics never seem quite as strong as the stuff that’s sourced directly from fresh petroleum. However, Cadillac didn’t mention any and instead boasted about how the cloth seats were woven from yarn made from 100-percent recycled materials and that the “PaperWood veneer” is made up of equal parts of tulip wood and recycled newspaper. I guess you have to spend Bentley money to get a vehicle with real wood anymore.

Owners might not mind if the vehicle stays under its estimated MSRP of $54,000 on our market, however. While that’s still not cheap for a modestly sized crossover, this is supposed to be an EV from a luxury nameplate and one the brand said has achieved class-leading interior space (second row and cargo).


Headroom is reported to be 39.6 inches in the front and only about an inch less in the back. It’s a similar story with shoulder room, with 57 inches available for frontal occupants and 56 in the rear. However, back-seat passengers do lose a little bit of legroom with the score being 41.6 inches for the driver and 37.8 inches for the people behind them. Cargo volume was said to be 26 cubic feet, which balloons to 57 cubic feet with the rear row folded.

That’s about what you’d get on a Mazda CX-50, which is actually a little smaller than the Optiq and makes you wonder how Cadillac did their math. Even if we just stick with EVs, the Ford Mach-E and Tesla Model Y both offer more room for cargo and they’re a few inches shorter than the Cadillac.


This is presumably because they both offer front trunks, so GM may be speaking exclusively about interior volume. But I’m still relatively certain that the Ford still offers a bit more room inside, too, perhaps indicating that the Optiq only wants to compare itself to other compact luxury EVs.

[Images: General Motors]

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Matt Posky
Matt Posky

A staunch consumer advocate tracking industry trends and regulation. Before joining TTAC, Matt spent a decade working for marketing and research firms based in NYC. Clients included several of the world’s largest automakers, global tire brands, and aftermarket part suppliers. Dissatisfied with the corporate world and resentful of having to wear suits everyday, he pivoted to writing about cars. Since then, that man has become an ardent supporter of the right-to-repair movement, been interviewed on the auto industry by national radio broadcasts, driven more rental cars than anyone ever should, participated in amateur rallying events, and received the requisite minimum training as sanctioned by the SCCA. Handy with a wrench, Matt grew up surrounded by Detroit auto workers and managed to get a pizza delivery job before he was legally eligible. He later found himself driving box trucks through Manhattan, guaranteeing future sympathy for actual truckers. He continues to conduct research pertaining to the automotive sector as an independent contractor and has since moved back to his native Michigan, closer to where the cars are born. A contrarian, Matt claims to prefer understeer — stating that front and all-wheel drive vehicles cater best to his driving style.

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  • Jimbo1126 Jimbo1126 on Jun 04, 2024

    Hopefully, some of the questionable design features will be in Europe only. The Lyriq sold in the UK and Europe is a different (and nicer) vehicle than what we get, with better sound and interior materials.

  • Mcs Mcs on Jul 08, 2024

    "Drivers will have plenty of options and will benefit from the vehicle’s 400-volt architecture?" That's not where a premium vehicle should be. 400-volt is econo-car class. Should be 800-volt or even 900.

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