Upcoming Cadillac electric cars won't look like their internal-combustion counterparts, Cadillac design director Brian Smith said in an interview with Automobile published Wednesday.

While most recent Cadillac models have taken styling cues from the Escala concept, the General Motors luxury brand is "making a bit of a departure" with its EVs, Smith said. He didn't offer many hints at what that EV-specific styling would be, but noted that electric Cadillacs won't have traditional grilles for aerodynamic reasons.

"Making electric cars desirable is what we're all about," Smith said, acknowledging that Tesla paved the way in making electric cars attractive from more than just an environmental perspective.

Future Cadillac long-range electric large luxury utility vehicle (rendering), 2019 Detroit auto sho

Future Cadillac long-range electric large luxury utility vehicle (rendering), 2019 Detroit auto sho

Cadillac will be the lead brand for GM's electric-vehicle transformation, the company has said, although the Chevrolet Bolt EV is the only all-electric model in GM's current lineup. The Lyriq crossover and Celestiq sedan, which were shown to media in March, are the only two models confirmed so far. An electric Escalade SUV may be in the works as well.

The Lyriq is coming in 2022 as Cadillac's first all-electric production model, just after the GMC Hummer EV. Smith said Cadillac's EV program is still "on track" despite stay-at-home restrictions stemming from the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

GM has revealed about a dozen of its future electric vehicles, with 20 new EVs in all due globally, with at least one model for each brand in the United States. This week it confirmed a van is part of the future lineup. These vehicles will be based on GM's Ultium electric-propulsion strategy, which uses a modular architecture and battery system.