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Cadillac unveils Elmiraj concept

The 500-horsepower Elmiraj hints at a range-topping Cadillac.

Cadillac will display a new concept car called Elmiraj at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance that will open its doors on Sunday in California. Billed as an evolution of the Ciel concept that debuted two years ago at the same event, the Elmiraj is the second in a series of three concept cars that hint at what a range-topping Cadillac could look like.

The Elmiraj's aggressive look indicates that it was designed as more of a driver's car than the open-top Ciel. It features a radiator grille with honeycomb inserts, sleek headlights mounted on the outer edges of the front end and an updated version of the Cadillac emblem that might make its way to the firm's production cars in the near future.

Although the Elmiraj is a clear expression of Cadillac's "Art and Science" design language, the automaker also admits the coupe silhouette draws inspiration from the history books.

"We were influenced in particular by the 1967 Eldorado, both its actual design and the fact that in its time that car was a very stark contrast and a new direction," explained Clay Dean, Cadillac's executive director of advanced design.

Able to accommodate four adults in a private jet-like comfort, the Elmiraj's cockpit features a large dose of handpicked fallen Brazilian Rosewood trim and a tall center console. The instrument cluster consists of two analog gauges mounted in front of a high resolution display that provides the driver with vital information about the car and its surroundings.

Under the Elmiraj's long hood is a 4.5-liter twin-turbocharged V8 that makes 500 horsepower and 500 lb-ft. of torque. How fast the 4,000-pound coupe can accelerate is not known.

Named after the dry El Mirage Lake bed in California where speed trials were held in the 1950s, the Elmiraj is merely a concept designed for the auto show circuit. GM CEO Dan Akerson recently confirmed a Cadillac flagship is in the works so we wouldn't be surprised to see a S-Class-fighting four-door sedan heavily inspired by the Elmiraj and the Ciel hit showrooms over the next couple of years.

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