By on July 1, 2013

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A bit of bittersweet news for the GM crowd: the General is hard at work on a new platform for large RWD cars, dubbed “Omega”, and a Cadillac variant of that car is well underway. But a potential flagship sedan, ala the Ciel concept car, won’t make it.

Automotive News reports that the largest Cadillac was considered too expensive and too close to the Omega vehicle, which will compete with the Mercedes-Benz S-Class and other large luxury sedans. Styling cues from the Ciel will reportedly make it into the Omega sedan, and Cadillac is said to be looking at more niche vehicles as well.

Without knowing any of the internal factors that went into this decision, it’s disappointing to hear the news. Furthermore, one would think that a truly distinct vehicle like a four-door convertible would be a huge hit with the subset one percenters who must have the latest, greatest and flashiest ride. There would be nothing else like it on the road.

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81 Comments on “Cadillac Cancels Halo Sedan, Omega Platform Forges Ahead...”


  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    I’m always so surprised when GM backs down from making an expensive, large car after a nice concept.

    On opposite day.

  • avatar
    jz78817

    “Without knowing any of the internal factors that went into this decision, it’s disappointing to hear the news. Furthermore, one would think that a truly distinct vehicle like a four-door convertible would be a huge hit with the subset one percenters who must have the latest, greatest and flashiest ride.”

    even if GM could release something that /objectively/ meets that criteria, there’s no guarantee that those “one percenters” would plunk down for a Cadillac no matter how nice or expensive it is.

    • 0 avatar
      th009

      Building a competitive S-class challenger will be quite halo enough for Cadillac at this stage of their rebuilding plan. Five or ten years from now it could be different, but now I think they are best off investing their resources in the development of a top sedan model.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        I think you’re probably right. They will inevitably have less money budgeted than MB spends on the S-class to do ALL the models which will be built off the Omega.

        Cadillac hasn’t been in the hi-lux category for quite some time, so it’s best they don’t overextend themselves.

      • 0 avatar

        #1 Many of the S-classes sold are 4-matics. I see nothing wrong with having a full sized car with AWD. Many rich dummies will include 4-matic anyway because they see it as “buying the top trim car with all the options”.

        When I had an S550 I learned very quickly I couldn’t easily bob and weave in traffic because it was so ridiculously long. It weaved like a BOAT. A car that big isn’t good for “driving enthusiasts”. If you get the S63 however and the sport package, the car shrinks around you.

        #2 There’s no such thing as an S-class competitor. It’s either “S class or no class”.

        #3 The XTS competes with the E-class, but its size puts it between the E and S. It seems to be selling quite well.

    • 0 avatar
      Compaq Deskpro

      One percenters regularly pay a measly 50-80 grand for an Escalade, and the popularity of the Bentley Continental GT and Rolls Royce Drophead Coupe prove that their is a market for an Eldorado.

      • 0 avatar
        Petra

        Those aren’t one percenters. Those are rubes with new money who think Escalades are what one percenters own.

        • 0 avatar

          Maybe so, but they are still in a position to buy such a car.

          • 0 avatar

            DEREK

            Exactly. FORBES has shown that most super rich people actually tool around in regular Chevy Malibus, Hondas, Toyotas and Sonatas while the new money in flying around in Ferraris, Lambo’s, etc.

            Many super rich people live on an allowance from their capital gains. They use their money to earn more money – rather than wasting it on depreciating assets.

            And roughly all of these new luxo barges are leased anyway. NO ONE finances this stuff anymore because they are basically throwing away thousands of dollars on depreciation.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            You’d be hard pressed to find these folks in a 2013 Malibu I suspect :)

            BTSR on another subject, is it wise for one to use a percentage of your gains to retire old debt held around 5%, or just go “all in” with gains in order to pursue a bigger return next time around?

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            @28-cars-later:

            Maybe not a Malibu… But Warren Buffet drives a Buick.

            It’s probably as much to blend in with all of the other old guys driving Buicks as it is for the middle class running costs. The guy’s a value investor, and has never been one to waste money.

        • 0 avatar
          genuineleather

          And associate themselves with rappers and entertainers? Heavens no, old boy; one percenters purchase Suburbans and Land Cruisers.

          • 0 avatar

            Oddly enough here in CT where there is plenty of old money suburbans ans land cruisers were the SUV of choice, but recently Ive noticed that escalades are popping up in old money neighborhoods and that the Mcmansions neighborhoods are switching to Audis. Not sure why it’s happened but it seemed to start with the current gen large SUVS from GM.

  • avatar
    Lorenzo

    Funny, Ford won’t make a halo Continental either. It looks like they’ve taken a page from Major League Baseball clubs, and stopped trying to build around a superstar, opting instead to build an ensemble team of competitive cars that will get them to the post-season. The problem is, selling cars, especially premium cars, is all about image.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      And Chrysler backed out from their halo Imperial a few years ago, which was a stunner.

      • 0 avatar

        I wouldn’t say that “backed out”. I’d say they “bankrupted” out. The Imperial was supposed to be put in production before Chrysler was acquired by Cerberus LLC.

        And considering a 300SRT8 is more highly equipped than an E-class and arguably looks better, why would they need anything larger?

        The extended wheelbase version that they had in production would make plenty of sense if they made them as “Luxury editions” with the 5.7-L HEMI standard and AWD.

        Thing is, I see lots of the new 300′s with Pentastar V6 used here as limos to replace the aging panthers and no one seems to be complaining.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          Oh for god’s sake get off your 300 soapbox. It’s never-ending. We get it, its the largest, most poweful, best built, most ferocious, highest brow, most luxurious car any living human person would ever, or could ever need in history.

          Point read. 10,000 times over.

          • 0 avatar
            FirebombDetroit

            Rumor has it that BTSR@YT also dabbles in amateur video production. Can’t recall where I heard it, though… oh wait, he said so. Fifteen times a day.

          • 0 avatar

            Did you know that he also has a JAGUAR XJ-L?

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            HAD NO IDEA.

          • 0 avatar
            morbo

            Lol, As someone that dropped $35K plus on a 300C, I understand the LX platform love. But I’ll admit my ’11 300C ain’t ever competing with the true halo cars like the S Class (sorry, S-Klasse) or 7 Series or RS8 or LS460 or Range Rover Cashcrusher 9000 (or whateevr they sell now to rappers, guidos, and disaffected stepford wives).

            At the end of the day, it’s an awesome testament to the American sedan. It’s theme song should be “Move B*tch, Get out the Way” by Ludacris. It’s not a pretentious ‘Look At How much money I spent’ vehicle like the others. They exist in a different realm that Chrysler (I don’t think) has never played in. Cadillac and Lincoln once did, Lexus has reached that realm (at least in the Northeast), and Infiniti is trying real hard to get there.

        • 0 avatar
          sgeffe

          I remember the Imperial concept off the last LX chassis–don’t recall if it was only in drawings or if it made it to the turntable as a concept.

          A new one off the new design might be neat.

          Don’t think I’d want a 300 as a primary driver if I only can have one car, but if I hit the lottery, my dream garage would likely have some SRT8 stuff in there–a 300 or JGC, for sure. Along with..hmmmmm..GT-R; ’87 Buick Regal GNX; ‘Stang GT500; ’70-’72 Olds 442, one of the last CTS-V wagons, in black, with, heaven help me, the slushbox, so as to get pink slips easier; one of the many and varied AMG cars, and an equivalent Beemer “M” variant…! 8-)

  • avatar

    The only car company that seems willing to give the people a car they want with everything they want – at a price that doesn’t seem unfair is HYUNDAI.

    • 0 avatar
      morbo

      The 760iL and RS8 are quite fairly priced….relative to NetJets or a personal helicopter.

      • 0 avatar

        Morbo:

        My XJ-L is a great car, but its starting price was as high as the 760il. the RS8 isn’t a good comparison while the A8 is, and it too is just as high.

        Thing is, you can get so much more for less money with an XTS, SRT8300c or MKS if you’re willing to put up with the lack of a V8 in the Lincoln/Cadillac.

        Helicopters cost considerably more.

        • 0 avatar
          Kyree S. Williams

          You don’t get “so much more” of anything with the MKS when it comes with the same corporate parts-bin stuff can that be had in most other Ford vehicles, like the instrument panel, infotainment system and key fob.

    • 0 avatar
      SaulTigh

      Genesis V6 is on my short list. It’s a tremendous value proposition for someone who wants to use it for road tripping.

  • avatar

    I recently took a coworker car shopping for a Toyota Avalon which with moonroof/nav/leather is basically $39,000. Meanwhile Hyundai wanted about $5000 less for an Azera and was DETERMINED to steal that deal from Toyota. When Toyota sais $475 per month, Hyundai said $399.

    We bought the Hyundai and drove home in a fully loaded Azera just 3 hours later.

    That same story repeats itself when you compare the Sonata and Genesis to other American cars. For what Hyundai gives you in the Genesis R-Spec CADILLAC and LINCOLN SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF THEMSELVES.

    The XTS is selling very well among limo companies here in NYC and I see just as many in the hands of regular retirees.

    Cadillac just doesn’t seem to get it though. Why are the headrests and waterfall cushions in a “Cadillac” manual when in an Azera/Cadenza they are powered?

    The lack of a V8 option is unforgivable at those prices and the V6 Cadillac offers is too weak until the Twin Turbo V6 is offered.

    I think what Cadillac needs to do is improve the XTS interior features and offer a slightly modified XTS that’s RWD only.

    Take out that GOTDAMNED STUPID “vibrating chair” nonsense and put in a MASSAGE CHAIR.

    If I worked for GM’s design team, they’d be turning out highly equipped MONSTERS that people actually wanted.

    …or do you wanna just let Hyundai do that instead?

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      I don’t think offering RWD is an option on that platform without major work though…

      Remember, it’s an Impala.

      • 0 avatar

        Remember, the CHEVY SS is coming soon. If they can “XTSify” an Impala, they can “XTSify” an SS.

        • 0 avatar
          Compaq Deskpro

          It is coming from Austrailia, which means it is profit-proof. I would love to see a Commodore Cadillac, but the factory is stuck out on the desert island in the middle of the pacific.

          • 0 avatar
            th009

            Arguably it should be easier to make the Commodore profitable with a Cadillac badge than with a Chevrolet one.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            The GM PPV is a Commodore.

            The platform is the best platform that GM currently has.

            It’s super flexible. You can make a 1 ton trayback to a prestige/luxury vehicle to a performance car that will take on AMGs and M Series BMWs.

            I would like to see GM start a new brand of vehicle called HSV made in Australia to target the prestige/luxury end of the market.

            GMH Australia has the capability to produce small runs more efficiently than most any GM operation globally.

            There is nothing wrong with the Omega platform.

          • 0 avatar
            Lorenzo

            The Pontiac G8 SHOULD have been a Cadillac. Properly equipped it would have been comparable to a BMW 7-series, and Cadillac dealers wouldn’t have screwed it up the way Pontiac dealers did.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I truly do wish they would put you on Cadillac’s design team BTSR. Even if whatever you came up with flopped, it would be ballsy.

    • 0 avatar
      Silvy_nonsense

      “For what Hyundai gives you in the Genesis R-Spec CADILLAC and LINCOLN SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF THEMSELVES.”

      Nothing says “I’ve arrived!” like a top-of-the-line Hyundai. Every dry cleaner in town will know I’m a success. As soon as the Olive Garden starts offering valet parking, I’ll feel like a real movie star. When I go to the outlet mall to buy pants, I don’t even have to look at the price tag! I’m on top of the world!!

      I tried to buy the optional “brand cachet” and “prestige” for my new Genesis, but the dealer said they were back-ordered for about twenty more years or so, and he couldn’t guarantee that they will ever arrive.

      • 0 avatar
        Lie2me

        +1 for knowing and understanding the real difference between a Cadillac and a Hyundai

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          There’s a difference at this point?

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            There is definitely a perceived difference as Silvy so perfectly pointed out. Brand cachet isn’t logical, but it’s real. Does a Rolex keep better time then a Timex, probably not, but it costs 1000x more and we all know why… because it’s a Rolex

          • 0 avatar
            th009

            And the Rolex definitely does not (no automatic watch does). But then that’s not why people buy them — or Cadillacs.

      • 0 avatar
        SaulTigh

        When I hold a Rolex in one hand and a Timex in the other, I can perceive a value difference much greater than when I drive a Genesis and a Cadillac back to back. And I’m not talking about brand cachet, I’m talking about build quality.

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          Quality rarely has anything to do with perceived value. If you took a survey of say 10K drivers and asked them which car is a luxury car, Cadillac or Genesis? I’d guess 9 to 1 would say Cadillac. Then ask them if they’ve heard of either one, the results would more then likely be the same. That’s brand cachet. Most marketers of anything would kill to have it, then you’ve got Cadillac and Lincoln who thought it be best to drag it around in the mud for 20+ years

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I agree, but I would point out as recently as ten to twelve years ago Lincoln still “had it” whereas Cadillac product wise has been lost in the woods since about 1980 give or take a few years in between (V4-6-8, Olds Diesel, HT4100, Northstar issues, the ’86 downsizing, Cimmaron, Allante (despite high margin), Catera Gen 1, SRX Gen 1, and so forth). If Ford hadn’t made so many financial missteps in the Nasser and Bill Ford eras, Lincoln may have gotten proper funding and would not be the joke of a trim package it is today. After all the MY98 Lincoln Navigator was the first luxury SUV moving 44K units in ’98, MY98 Town Car moved 98K units in its first year of redesign, and LS moved 50K units in MY00. Granted those were high points for all of those models but it shows at one point the brand was taken seriously.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            Well, true to an extent, though Lincoln had it’s Versailles moment. Maybe I should have said Cadillac dragged it’s brand cachet around in the mud where as Ford just let Lincoln sit in it

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      I’m sorry, but how do you “slightly modify” the XTS’s decidedly-FWD-based Super Epsilon platform to get a RWD XTS? It doesn’t work that way; otherwise they’d have done it. Sure, they could have added some features, but I think the XTS is about as good as things can get for Cadillac until that Omega-based sedan rolls out.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    I’ll be interested to see this Omega because maybe I’ll be proven wrong but as of now I’m interpreting this as building real Cadillacs is too expensive so screw it we’ll keep phoning in faux BMWs.

    • 0 avatar
      Ryoku75

      I always saw Caddys of today as phoney Mercedes, but I can see the Beemer connection, right down to both companies building relatively useless station wagons.

  • avatar
    Land Ark

    “There would be nothing else like it on the road.”

    This sentence pretty much sums up why I feel GM doesn’t produce anything groundbreaking. Too much risk involved with bringing something new and exciting to market? More Euro platformed FWD sedans!!! Without the retroization of the Mustang and following mint in Ford’s pockets, do you think GM would have released the retro Camaro?
    Of course you could just as easily change GM with pre-Fiat-Chrylser in this case.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Chrysler under any of its ownership didn’t have the resources GM has/had so groundbreaking for them is far more challenging. GM chooses to go in the direction its in, instead of pushing the envelope.

  • avatar
    william442

    I wanted a Cadilac for years…until I leased one. No comparison to my new Acura!

  • avatar
    gslippy

    My doubts about the viability of the ELR project continue. Maybe they’ll wake up and change course.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      I guess the thinking behind the ELR is that Volt buyers are loaded, so they need to charge them more. I don’t see this creating many new sales, although the potential exists for people turning in their Volts early to upgrade to ELRs. Nothing says green like throwing away something perfectly useful in favor of something that makes a statement.

    • 0 avatar
      hf_auto

      I think the ELR (almost) makes a lot more sense than the Volt, it’s just missing 2 doors.
      Not knowing what the final MSRP will be on the ELR, I would feel much better spending an extra $10k on an ELR with a gorgeous interior than spending $40k on a Volt with an economy-grade interior. I think upscale interiors are a good way to “ammortize”, if you will, the incremental cost of batteries.

  • avatar
    philadlj

    As this news trickles down the interwebz, I see the opportunity for confusion amongst those who have been following the “Caddy is building a flagship” story. Whether it was because I wasn’t as informed as others, I didn’t think Cadillac had ANY intention of building the Ciel 4-door convertible, any more than I thought Merc was going to build their S-Class-based Ocean Drive 4-door convertible.

    That said, I’m further confused by the fact that this Ciel-like halo car would have cost at least $100,000. THAT’s been canceled, but plans are still on for a sedan that will fight the S-Class and 7-Series. Correct me if I’m wrong, but it doesn’t really take long for the S and 7 to enter $100,000 territory.

    So if Cadillac is seriously considering a sedan to challenge those stalwarts, it’s going to have to be pretty damn good, and will probably hit that price anyway once all the boxes are checked.

    I’m not that miffed that there won’t be a convertible version, though. Not many tears were shed when Maybach ceased production of their Laundaulet…or anything else, for that matter.

    Cadillac is doing what it should be doing: ditching more radical halo plans and instead focusing on a sedan that will hopefully be as competitive with its German counterparts as the ATS is.

    • 0 avatar
      th009

      I would expect a Cadillac S/7/A8 competitor to start at under $60K. Maybe $80K fully loaded, but still substantially less than the Germans. And it’ll need to be priced that way until Cadillac builds some additional credibility.

    • 0 avatar

      Bro?

      There still will be a four-door convertible ocean drive.

      • 0 avatar
        Kyree S. Williams

        No Ocean Drive convertible for anyone; sorry. But Mercedes-Benz does have plans to roll the CL (which is just an S-Class coupe) into the S-Class family…and that family will include a convertible nice enough to compete with the Bentley Continental GTC.

  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    I thought the CTS-V was Cadillac’s “halo car.” ;-) I thought the design of this car was interesting, elegant, and –best of all — not derivative of something else on the road.

    I think the problem is that GM’s managers don’t feel that they can handle the risk of developing this car for production. It’s like having a home run hitter who strikes out a lot vs. having a guy who doesn’t make many home runs but is pretty good at getting a base hit . . . and doesn’t strike out so much. That said, if Cadillac wants to move up in the world, they have to appreciate that doing it incrementally will always result in their offering being benchmarked against something from Germany . . . or Japan. And the presumption will be that the German or Japanese product is better. The Germans have “heritage” and the Japanese have a reputation for reliability.

    I’m old enough to remember, first hand, when Cadillac was “the standard of the world.” I was a “poor relation” of a guy who was VP of the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1957, when that meant, among other things, he had his own private railroad car. I got to ride around in his Cadillac Fleetwood . . . a truly amazing car, smooth and nearly silent, but effortless in operation, air conditioned, power windows and everything else. It was a unique automobile that had presence like nothing else — especially from Europe.

    Those are the kinds of cars that GM, Chrysler or Ford need to build if they really want to play in the luxury car game.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Personally I never saw the CTS-V as a halo car, I saw it as a top trim package (which it essentially is) that Cadillac could not or would not offer on standard CTS, so they created it as its own model (probably for CAFE reasons).

      Halo cars are typically low(er) production specialty cars, Cadillac’s last halo car was most likely XLR. Now it may be ELR.

  • avatar
    donnyindelaware

    I would rather see a Chrysler Imperial but that will never happen based on Sergio not pushing Chrysler back up to a premium status. SMH

  • avatar
    SoCalMikester

    I think they should be investing in a decent large RWD platform that could be adapted to make a station wagon, taxi, limo, cop car, land barge, el camino… all segments that are largely unfilled by anyone. Body on frame would be ideal, obviously. Aluminum frame, maybe?

    • 0 avatar
      th009

      Uhh, that platform is what Omega is. Though you’ll likely never see another El Camino.

      I am curious as to what advantages you perceive for body-on-frame construction in a premium or luxury car, though. Easier collision repair? Unibody construction is stronger, stiffer, lighter and yet safer when compared side by side with an equivalent body-on-frame design. That’s why body-on-frame is pretty much extinct outside the truck world.

  • avatar
    sckid213

    I’m a Cadillac fan, but I’m not hugely disappointed in this news. Let the division continue to grow and regain momentum, THEN worry about frivolities like a super-premium flagship.

    If they’d cancelled their S-class fighter, then we’d have a real issue.

    Lexus aimed for the stars with the LFA, and I bet if you go out on the street and ask average people what the LFA is, nobody would be able to tell you what it is. To me, that’s money wasted.

  • avatar
    Ryoku75

    If I were designing the next Caddy I’d take one of Chevys truck platforms, lower it, and give it 2 bench-seater interior (with optional bucket seats and center console), and the styling would be a bit closer to classic luxury cars rather than “I’m not a Mercedes!”.

    It’d also handle badly, get mediocre gas mileage, but no better or worse than a Bugatti Veyron.

    The interior space wouldn’t be the best, but this would be a rare chance to buy a true American luxury car once more, pros, cons, and all.

    It would also have a name instead of shoe size, something like “Eldorado”, powered by Cadillacs sixteen cylinder engine that they refuse to produce.

    And no one would buy it, and GM wouldn’t approve of it because it wouldn’t ape the styling of their current models.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    I can’t believe GM was seriously entertaining the thought of a superluxury car so soon in the first place. Yes, it would have been a nice halo vehicle, but people still need to get used to the idea that Cadillac can compete with the heavyweights, especially in the full-sized RWD sedan arena. You don’t get to move from Infiniti competitor to Bentley competitor overnight…

  • avatar
    npbheights

    It’s smart. They should build their Genesis fighter before their Equus fighter. Cadillac is not ready to take on Hyundai toe to toe.

  • avatar
    redliner

    As long as the domestic “luxury” brands compete on value and by having more features than the competition at a lower price, they will always be second tier.

    They need to be able to compete on their own merits. It’s like Kia ten years ago. They where good for the price, but not really that good. Now they cost the same as everything else and are perceived to be roughly on equal footing with the competition.

  • avatar
    AMC_CJ

    The car I really want is a mid 60′s Imperial….. nobody is ever going to build such a thing anymore.

    I want something big, wide, low. Nothing bloated. I don’t want a computer screen in it, or 20-position heated or cooled seats. I just want a big powerful car, that has real metal laid out across the interior, real chrome, and is over engineered and over-built to withstand anything I can throw at it. Power window, locks, fine. A/C of course, but nothing else but fine materials, craftsman ship, etc. And I want it to FLOAT down the road.

  • avatar
    Michael500

    What sucks is that the prototype looked so cool:
    http://www.flickriver.com/photos/bluesboybob/6215095091/

  • avatar
    gorentacarmedubai

    Nice car, all the facility and new technology included in this car. You can hire various type of excellent car from The Go Rent A Car International. We are superb car rental in Dubai, UAE.

    http://www.gorentacarme.com


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