By on December 9, 2014

Casa-de-Cadillac-_Christmas-1955 Courtesy curbsideclassic.com

It is not our intention to pile on poor Cadillac after our recent discussion, but comments made last week by the automaker’s marketing manager Ewe Ellinghaus must be noted. Speaking to Advertising Age, he repeated the new company mantra about the carmaker becoming a “the first luxury brand that happens to make cars,” and then added:

“When I recruit new people, I don’t need petrolheads. We have more than enough petrolheads and we will still. I need people with experiences in other industries, but with luxury brands.”

We must assume that Ellinghaus, most recently with Montblanc pens and formerly with BMW, was using the European term equivalent to what we call a “car guy” or “car gal.” If so, Cadillac’s future is as bleak as the B&B thinks it is, and not just because of products.Ellinghaus and new Cadillac president Johan de Nysschen are assembling a team of perfectly-diverse and social-media savvy managers from non-automotive luxury companies who probably know all the right restaurants in their new home in New York City. That is fine but choosing not to hire proven car industry folks is just plain dumb. A car guy or gal is someone who has succeeded because they understand that sales only comes from great cars, great marketing and great dealers.  Bob Lutz is a car guy. Soichiro Honda was a car guy. Lee Iaccoca was a car guy. Ellinghaus says Cadillac has cars guys on staff but we can’t think of any; either way he insulted them all by saying, “we have more than enough petrolheads.”

Ford Motor Company has a true car guy on the rise by the name of Henry Ford III. The great-great grandson of the company’s founder actually spent a summer at Galpin Ford in Los Angeles selling cars to better understand the retail side of the business. We doubt you will ever see de Nysschen or Melody Lee, their “Director of Brand and Reputation Strategy” talking to Cadillac shoppers on a showroom floor, let alone ever setting foot in one of their retailers. Speaking of dealers, Cadillac needs a major overhaul of their dealer body, one that is lagging behind other luxury brands in customer handling. Whoever will be in charge of dealer relations needs to be a major car person, not Amber from Tiffany’s.

One issue not discussed by our commentariat in our last Caddy story was the impending move of their sales and marketing team from Detroit to Manhattan. One good thing about being in New York is the chance to hire managers away from the US headquarters of BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Subaru in northern New Jersey. (Oh, wait, they are not hiring petrolheads.) Separating themselves geographically from the rest of GM might be a good idea, but they went the wrong direction: they should have gone west to car-crazy Los Angeles. Lee recently said that people in New York City are a “little bit ahead of everyone else,” another insult to GM’s Michigan workforce. That may be, but people in Los Angeles are ten steps ahead when it comes to knowing great cars.

At least Ford was visionary enough to open an Orange County, CA office in 1999 as headquarters for its former “Premier Auto Group” brands, Range Rover, Volvo, Jaguar, Aston Martin, and Lincoln. Cadillac should have done the same. Ford was thus smack in the middle of the market where import luxury brands sell upwards of 20% of their cars and where Mercedes-Benz sells 50% of its AMG hot rods. Automotive trends start in Los Angeles, not New York.

Ford's old SOCAL luxury brand building; Caddy should have done the same

Ford’s former LA luxury brand building; Cadillac should have moved to SoCal rather than SoHo

Ford execs could walk downstairs on a Saturday morning and meet hundreds of knowledgeable car folks at the premiere “Cars and Coffee” gathering in the country. When the Caddy crew walks out of their Soho high-rise, what car folks will they be able to meet and greet other than limo and taxi drivers?

Cadillac has massive product issues and their sales are tanking this year. Industry insiders wonder how long de Nysschen and his crew will last at Caddy. We think his next move should be to Acura so he can say he worked for the trifecta of Muddled Brand Image, Nutty Nomenclature Automakers: Infiniti, Cadillac and Acura. At least he will be in Southern California, surrounded by petrolheads.

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164 Comments on “Cadillac Exec: “No Petrolheads Need Apply”...”


  • avatar

    He’s right and you’re not. Something huge and important and good is happening here, and you have completely missed the story.

    • 0 avatar
      wmba

      What story is that? Pray tell the great unwashed.

      Perhaps Chanel No 6 by Cadillac from a air-mister like the new S Class.

      • 0 avatar
        thornmark

        Sarcasm.

      • 0 avatar
        stuki

        New York is where the banksters live. The banksters are increasingly handed ALL of everyone else’s money. Until noone else has any money. Caddilac wants to sell to people with money.

        I prsonally think/hope, those whose station is supposed to be simple robbery victims will eventually wise up and McVeigh the whole dump before things get quite that far, but betting against ever more aggressive officially sanctioned looting by New Yorkers hasn’t paid off so far.

    • 0 avatar
      philipbarrett

      Really? I’m in their demographic & what got me looking at Cadillac again was a pair of violently loud race cars tearing it up during a sports car event at COTA. But then I’m sure a lifestyle piece in The New Yorker would be a much better ad spend.

      BMW have always had car folk, Mercedes didn’t for a period, I’m sure you remember the C-Class?

    • 0 avatar
      TW5

      Maybe, but the Germans are mining the US for technology, while Cadillac is telling people what/how to think about luxury cars. In the background, the god-awful CUE system continues to turn people away.

      Branding is important, but hiring a bunch of smarmy Euro luxobots to run ads depicting oiled-up bi-curious male models tonguing the latest must have luxury good is not going to play in the US. As the author opined, it would have made more sense to go to Hollywood.

    • 0 avatar

      So what is so huge and important that it cannot be spelled out in a blog comment?

    • 0 avatar
      energetik9

      I missed the good and huge that must be wrapped up in the downward spiral that is Cadillac. If you wrote more than a sentence, you might have helped us know what you’re talking about.

    • 0 avatar
      tresmonos

      John is cueing in on the tastes of the refined Chinese consumer.

      • 0 avatar
        Lorenzo

        Thanks for the reminder: GM is the Chinese luxury brand holding company that happens to sell cars in America. Or will be. Eventually.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          Cadillac’s image sucks. The first thing I think of when I hear that brand name are geriatric drivers. Then next thought is of overpriced products that lack prestige, power, or presence.

          A person tends to buy luxury cars to send a message about their wealth and social status.

          A “born again” luxury brand has as much appeal as a “born again” standing at your door at 8:00 AM Saturday morning.

          They’d be better off putting Cadillac out of its misery just like Ford should kill Lincoln.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I disagree, he is a pompous ass and has no idea what he’s talking about.

  • avatar
    roadscholar

    Just finished reading Car and Driver’s Ten Best issue. They seemed to like the CTS. The only modern Caddy I’ve driven was an ATS 2.0L Auto that felt a bit rough around the edges compared to a 3-series. Caddy sales aren’t doing well so all of the ones I see around Detroit must be due to employees, friends, and family plans.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      88% of the Caddy ATSs & CTSs seen in metro Detroit are employee discounted leases (GM is so desperate to move Cadillac sludge that they brought back true employee pricing for Tier I and Tier II suppliers, as well as dealership and distribution channel employees).

      Johan & Melody Lee have a plan, though.

  • avatar
    DeadWeight

    F*ck you, Cadillac, with Johan “Destroyer of Goodwill Equity” de Nysschen and his pet Millennial, Melody Lee, spouting synergy-driven, social media saturation buzzspeak, in tow.

    And f*ck Ellinghaus, your little euro purse puppy, too.

    Reincarnate Roger Smith, re-animator style, to run Cadillac.

    Cadillac fired its ad agency, and hired Publicis, an ad agency based in Paris

    Sounds sophisticated…like ooh la la sophisticated.

    Cadillac is BACK, BABY! They just needed better commercials.

    http://www.detroitnews.com/story/business/autos/general-motors/2014/12/04/cadillac-drops-lowe-partners-agency-publicis/19895777/

    ***Sexy Style – Cadillac Season’s Best Event TV Commercial***

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5UhZBKy1EUw

    $229-$249 a month ATS’s as stocking stuffers for all!

    ***And a weird, Eyes Wide Shut type masquerade party for people driving Cadillacs in that ***

    ___

    Cadillac can’t GIVE the “BMW slaying” ATS or CTS away:

    “Dealer supply of the ATS has been high and at the end of November was at 171 days’ supply, up from 151 days at the end of October, according to LMC Automotive. Supply of the CTS also rose to 123 days at the end of November, from 113 at the end of October.

    Analysts say a healthy inventory is about two to three months’ supply depending on the vehicle. Cadillac dealers have nearly six months’ supply of the ATS.”

    http://www.detroitnews.com/story/business/autos/general-motors/2014/12/08/gm-lansing-grand-river-layoffs/20102487/

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    “I don’t need petrolheads”

    Maybe not, but you do need people who understand the car business and where Cadillac fits into the minds of the buying public and give them what they want. Better yet, if you want to really succeed give them what they don’t even know they want yet. That’s how Cadillac became a success when they were

    • 0 avatar

      Don’t you think that what he’s saying, essentially, is that petrolheads aren’t car-buyers? I find that to be true, since most gearheads I know tend to buy used or CPO, which makes them totally irrelevant to businesses that sell, you know, NEW cars. No?

      • 0 avatar
        Lie2me

        Going a little deeper perhaps that’s the essence of a great car. The constant battle between the gearheads who want to make a super-car and marketing who wants to make an appealing car. When the chemistry comes together just right you have the makings of a great car

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        First step: Make vehicles that people prefer over competitors’ vehicles, regardless as to whether those people are “car people” or “non-car people.”

        Cadillac is just pathetic. $45k ATSs, $58k CTSs and $65k XTSs (a tarted up 35k Chevy Impala) offer no allure.

        But better marketing/commercials will fix this. /s/

      • 0 avatar
        carguy67

        re: ‘… since most gearheads I know tend to buy used or CPO …’

        Yep, and ‘real’ off-roaders buy an old CJ or Cherokee and dump a small block in it, but that doesn’t stop Jeep from marketing off-roading to the yuppies that usually buy new Cherokees and GCs.

      • 0 avatar
        smartascii

        Actually, I think what he’s saying, which is a version of what de Nysschen and Lee are saying, is that branding trumps product. This may be because all of this is (hiring these people, moving HQ to New York, etc.) is a deliberate act on the part of a company with no intention of investing in the product with the kind of dollars or timeline that would actually make a sales difference. But I think it actually reflects a confusion on GM’s part about Cadillac’s identity. So they’re rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic in order to look busy until someone tells them where they’re going.

        • 0 avatar
          thornmark

          >>Actually, I think what he’s saying, which is a version of what de Nysschen and Lee are saying, is that branding trumps product..<<

          They already did that and it doesn't work.

          See:

          "Zarrella and the fall of GM".

          It’s a little different than Zarrella but the theme is the same, i.e., product is less import than savvy marketing. And the smart marketeers can get people to buy the “product”, whatever it is.

      • 0 avatar
        natrat

        gear heads aren’t new car buyers with the possible exception of niche markets like vette, z06, 911, m3/m4, mustang gt, ctsv – those must be sold, in part, to gear heads addicted to going fast, that would be horrible if those cars werent driven in anger now and then

  • avatar
    danio3834

    The So-Cal PAG thing didn’t really work out for Ford, I’m not sure it would have for Cadillac either.

    To be fair, the quote in the headline isn’t actually a quote of what he said. What he’s saying is that they need to improve their marketing to non-gearheads as motorbrains already generally appreciate such awesomeness that is the CTS-V and the like. They need the volume of non-enthusiast, luxury minded buyers as well.

    If everyone must twist it into an affront for the two-minutes hate, carry on…

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      Oooo deliberate misquotes. That’s irresponsible.

      And yea, Caddy is right that they need to get to non-gearheads. But their new products’ strengths only appeal to gearheads. No marketing strategy can change that. The whole “using marketing to sell bad product” thing died with the birth of the information age.

    • 0 avatar
      xflowgolf

      This!

      “the quote in the headline isn’t actually a quote of what he said. What he’s saying is that they need to improve their marketing to non-gearheads as motorbrains already generally appreciate such awesomeness that is the CTS-V and the like.”

      Agree wholeheartedly.

      He’s not saying they don’t need gearheads, in fact he’s saying they have lots, and will continue to have lots, but they need people who can sell the goods. Remember that 80% of BMW owners who don’t know if their car is RWD or FWD? THAT is who they need to sell cars to. In droves. Worldwide. Because Cadillac. …and no gearhead on the planet holds the key to that conundrum.

    • 0 avatar

      @danio: Don’t forget 1984 happened 30 years ago. You cannot turn history back – we live in post-1984 era.

  • avatar
    cwallace

    Danny Bahar had the same big idea for Lotus, and we know how that turned out. And the Lotus brand might have actually had enough cred to pull through a line of clothing and accessories or whatever.

    I don’t think anyone with any sort of brand aspiration would be caught dead wearing or carrying anything that said Cadillac on it, lest they be mistaken for the second-place winner in some sales incentive program. Third place is, you’re fired!

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      “I don’t think anyone with any sort of brand aspiration would be caught dead wearing or carrying anything that said Cadillac on it”

      Unless you’re appealing to a lower demographic who “drive Cadillacs in their dreams” An image I’m sure Cadillac desperately wants to shake while still selling cars to it

    • 0 avatar

      I agree with this 100%. A few years ago, my (then) GF bought a Cadillac-branded road bike from KMart (I think- if not KMart, WalMart, which may be worse). That’s just … that’s not how you build an aspirational brand.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        http://fcdn.mtbr.com/attachments/general-discussion/77564d1116256402-amusing-cadillac-bicycles-caduntitled-1.jpg

        Epic!

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          I call “fake” without the tufted crushed-velour seat it’s not a “real” Cadillac bike

        • 0 avatar

          I believe that Cadillac had a sponsorship deal with a bicycle racing team so the idea of a Cadillac branded bike is not such a bad idea. Also, the bike in that photo is a pretty decent bike. Based on the components and the fact that it was available in different frame sizes, it was a bike shop quality bike and I doubt it was at a KMart or Walmart. There’s one on Overstock.com for $299. Not only is that a lot more than any bike you’d find at a KMart or Walmart, those two stores generally don’t sell distressed merchandise.

          For an interesting look at car companies, non automotive products, and distressed merchandise, look up the story of the Chrysler Sno Runner.

    • 0 avatar
      Morea

      First place was a Caddy, second place was a set of steak knives, third place was ‘you’re fired’.

      Of course, the man sent by Mitch and Murray arrived in a BMW…

  • avatar

    Do I have to be the guy to point out that every company save one (BMW) that Bob Lutz worked for or had influence over suffered brutal setbacks in the marketplace under his tenure? Between 1974 and 1986, Ford’s market share plummeted and the Japanese ate their lunch. Under Lutz, Chrysler gave us the Viper, sure- but it also gave us the PT Cruiser, a 3 speed automatic in the Neon, a whole boat-load of crappy V6 engines in the LH models. Once Chrysler was bought by ze Germans, they realized they’d been sold a polished turd and got rid of it (and Lutz) as soon as they could. While working at Exide, he publicly derided EVs, battery technology, and global warming, so instead of a battery-dominated world where Exide emerged as a major player, it’s now a KMart brand. Between 2001 and 2008/9, Lutz’ tenure at GM saw it lose billions and, eventually, go into bankruptcy just as Lutz moved to “secure his legacy” by sucking up to the EV crowd he’d spent years openly mocking with the Volt hybrid … which, also, isn’t exactly setting the world on fire with the profits it’s (not) generating for GM.

    Lutz may be a hero, but the guy (and his way of thinking) seems to be straight-up poison to any business that listens to him.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      Much of this is exaggerated to try and validate your dislike for the man, especially the part about his time at Chrysler where they became one of the most profitable companies and a sought after aquisition. The fact that you use the PT Cruiser as an example of a mistake that was made proves you don’t know what you’re talking about. The PT was a genius product decision at the time.

      • 0 avatar
        raph

        Agreed Danio, Chrysler was doing very well at the time and was sitting on a mountain of cash intended for the company to weather tough times and for new product development which Daimler pretty much squandered on fat bonus checks, buying bob Eaton’s silence, and the Smart car.

    • 0 avatar
      Quentin

      I’m of the opinion that almost every “Lutz” car was half baked. He’d get all wound up on a project for a while and get bored when it came down to the details (you know, the details that allowed the Viper to have screaming hot door sills that were 1′ wide so you were most assuredly burned if you wore shorts… he should have sent the car back and said “fix it” but he couldn’t see the bad details for the big engine in the pretty car.) The Prowler not being able to fit a V8 for the sake of the styling is another good example of Lutz’s lack of attention to detail. His general apathy toward ‘normal’ cars was painfully obvious. Toward the end of his tenure at GM, he was just saying “put chrome on it”. His whole “car guy” vs. “bean counters” mantra shows his absolute disconnect with how people use cars in the real world. Car guys want big, loud engines in sexy chassis. Most people would want that, too, but most people are pragmatic and they buy what they perceive that they need.

      • 0 avatar
        danio3834

        Another poster that conveniently ignores Lutz influenced products like the Ford Explorer, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Chrysler LH cars, Neon, ’94 Dodge Ram, Cadillac CTS, Chevy equinox, ’08 Malibu, and 2010 Camaro to make their narrative against the guy. Maybe you don’t like his politics or his comportment, but he knows cars and the car biz. No he didn’t bat 1000 when it came to products, but he certainly had his share of home runs.

        • 0 avatar
          Quentin

          I’m not sure I’d use the first gen Explorer and LH cars as examples of home runs. Aspects of them were definitely home runs (SUV market, cab forward design), but the devil was in the details on both since the Explorer ultimately was something Ford would rather forget and the LH cars had notoriously bad drivetrain durability. Like I said. Details.

          The Neon and Ram sold well, but the durability was not good on either (or at least not looking like a jalopy after 5 years). Equinox and Malibu were largely good products. You can’t see out of a Camaro and it weighs 4000 lbs. Those are pretty serious oversights, IMO. I’m not saying that all of the products that he championed were terrible, btw.

          • 0 avatar
            danio3834

            They were all massive business successes. Nitpicking reliability decades later doesn’t change the fact that they were incredibly good business decisions for their companies at the time.

          • 0 avatar
            Erikstrawn

            Reliable cars aren’t the only ones that make money. Rather, the unreliable cars are usually better at it. Explorers, LHs, Neon/PTs may be reliability turds, but they were bread-and-butter cars that kept their companies afloat when they should have been filing for bankruptcy.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            “They were all massive business successes”

            Absolutely! Along with the Pinto the Mustang II and the “K” Car and all it’s derivatives

          • 0 avatar

            Belvedere-built Neon had good reliability. Even the move to Toluca didn’t shake it. Only when PT was moved to the death bed, then its reliability collapsed. It coincided with its decline in the marketplace.

            The worst thing Neon suffered from was paint. Chrysler blamed environmental regulations, but I’m not sure if that was the actual cause. Wranglers of the same vintage seem to retain their paint fine.

          • 0 avatar

            What was not good about the durability of Neons? I knew guys who were members of the 200k Club. One went to 250k miles with 5 oil changes (every 50k miles). Mine rusted in just one spot: where I hit it with a metal snow brush and knocked paint off. I sold it at 178k miles.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The Explorer is the opposite of something that Ford wants to forget. It is responsible for an obscene amount of profits for the company and once it became a CUV it saved the D-platform from being a complete flop.

        • 0 avatar
          nickoo

          Buick Lucerne was a maximum Bob product. It was one of the worst driving and handling cars on the toaf, and had the absolute worst braking. I am in the camp that he gets way too much credit, mostly because he was a blowhard. Let’s not forget his gto flop and solstice sky twins which helped bankrupt gm.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            What did you expect from a Buick based on the DTS? Sportiness?

          • 0 avatar
            nickoo

            Bball, I expected a car with better dynamics than a 1985 park avenue better styling thann a face only a mother could love topped off with a Fischer price interior, that’s for sure. Ttac has many good reviews on the Lucerne if you search for them…testing the Lucerne braking numbers from other magazines put it at literally dead last stopping distance by a wide margin, that’s the dangerous type of thinking that petmiates gm and bob had his hand in all of it.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            It was made to be a full size couch on wheels. I’m not a fan of it, but it was what it was supposed to be. It’s the last old school, non Opel/Daewoo/Chinese, Buick sedan.

            Let’s be honest, by 2011, when the Lucerne ended production, it was on an at least 12 year old platform. It was a rebodied Park Ave/LeSabre. The Panthers were technically newer.

            Lutz is also mentioned as having much to do with the Epsilon II Lacrosse and the Enclave. I don’t know how much credit he should get for the successes and failures of the GM products during his tenure, but the Lucerne is exactly what a Buick was expected to be for a long time, for better or worse.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            The Lucerne was built on the same line, in the same factory, as the DTS.

            It was the nadir of GM badge engineering days (thought they’ve not faded completely), with just some different styling cues, inside and out, and different motors (including a Buick specific 3800 as well as a neutered Northstar), to try and help to give the DTS more status.

            It was a product literally forcibly created by GM’s terrible financial condition and overall inept bureaucracy of the time – I’m not sure how this was one of Lutz’s sins or “doings.”

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      I’m not a fan of Lutz, but he has scored some significant home runs (the Explorer may be the most significant, along with the 3-series.)

      He was brought into Exide in order to prepare it for bankruptcy, which was needed because of his predecessor. He not only doesn’t deserve the blame, but he also made it possible for Exide to have a successful reorganization.

      The PT Cruiser was also a winner for Chrysler. I didn’t particularly like them, but they were a benefit to the company.

      He has also made some dubious choices along the way and he’s a blowhard of a self-promoter, but he’s done a fair bit of good for his employers.

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    Methinks you don’t understand the term “petrolhead”. Sure, it means car guys, in the sense of performance-oriented drivers, NOT builders.

    His very clear and obvious point is that Cadillac has lost its way. It has gone from being America’s ultimate luxury car to trying to compete with Mercedes and BMW. It’s original competition was Rolls Royce, Bentley and others in the stratospheric luxury class. Sure, even Bentley has a high-performing model, but it still doesn’t sacrifice the comfort that IS a Bentley. You don’t see Bentley or Rolls putting out a Corvette-sized “supercar”; it’s just not done.

  • avatar
    AGR

    Cadillac has great product in the ATS and CTS, with a deeply flawed sales “playbook” reinforced by the new arrivals at Cadillac. That persist in having no clue on how to move “Cadillac iron” in a competitive market segment.

    Until the folks entrusted to sell and market Cadillac remain in denial it will deteriorate.

    The value of the Cadillac brand is not at the level of the Germans, its as simple as Cadillac pricing their cars accordingly, with enticing lease packages, effective remarketing, and pro active CPO programs.

    It took the Germans decades to finely calibrate all three.

  • avatar
    rpol35

    Eff ’em all. These effete will be dismissed, hopefully with the stroke of a Montblanc pen.

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    Do you know what the one compelling thing that would get me into a new Cadillac is? All this emotionally charged controversy. How exciting to drive a car that has such a polarizing effect on so many people. No Camcords for me, love it or hate it, I drive a CADILLAC. The no excuses Kim Kardashian of automobiles

    Perhaps these marketing geniuses can run with that

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    I have a very nice leather jacket that came with an STS lease. Has the Cadillac name and wreath crest on the left breast.

    Used to wear it with pride even after the Northstar grenaded at less than 10,000km and after the lease expired.

    “Oooooh, you drive a Cadillac”. Even in the mid 1990’s it still had cachet in my age group.

    It has sat in a closet since about the start of this century unworn.

    This from someone who once (briefly) owned a prime 1959 Cadillac and still regrets selling it. Whose old man purchased a 77 Eldorado and and 79 Fleetwood new.

    Don’t even ask me about our family history with and love for early and mid 1970’s Lincolns which were the epitome of North American car class.

    The Germans at their lunch. As the article states, until the ’80s German cars were not even Cadillacs competition, it was the big name British car brands. Now the D2 have lost their way. Bring in more and better engineers. Build better cars than the competition. Then create a halo model that the poseurs will lust for. That is how you beat the Germans at their own game.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      Cadillac has shiite products, no matter how many people are in denial of this.

      They’re not Cadillacs anymore, even in a re-casted, modernized sense.

      They are anonymous wedges, angles & blobs.

      There is nothing proud or distinctive about the manufacturing, fabrication, ride or quality of these motor vehicles.

      • 0 avatar
        petezeiss

        More importantly, they’re effing *tiny*.

        Little humpy things dwarfed by the minivans and SUVs parked around them do not jealous eyeballs draw.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          The limited legroom, shoulder room and headroom in the ATS and CTS is 100% INEXUSABLE for any Cadillac, period.

          I could care less who/what Cadillac claims they’re “benchmarking” or how fast their vehicles are around the Nürburgring.

          • 0 avatar
            redav

            If a car short on legroom or is uncomfortable at all, I don’t consider it “luxury,” period.

            It was a major turn off for me. It’s a case of “If you can’t do something basic, how can I expect you to do something complicated?”

          • 0 avatar
            86er

            “redav: If a car short on legroom or is uncomfortable at all, I don’t consider it “luxury,” period.”

            Spot on. The greatest luxury is room. You’d think hundreds of years of cross-Atlantic migration would have imprinted that notion on people.

          • 0 avatar
            thelaine

            Agreed DW. Insanity. How much money have they spent? How many times is the turnaround just around the corner? How can you do so well by the Corvette customer and so poorly with potential Cadillac buyers?

            Following GM is an exercise in frustration. They do some things that seem to prove they can be a class leader, and just when you start to hope, they rape the pooch.

            The pattern just repeats over and over again. Lurch this way, then lurch that way.

            We are getting better. We are right behind ….(Honda, Toyota, BMW etc)… and catching up. We have this and this selling well and we have exciting new products coming soon that will be….GAME CHANGERS…

            Cadillac should move their headquarters to Shangri-La, where reality never intrudes on fantasy.

    • 0 avatar
      Arthur Dailey

      That should read ‘leased’ not ‘purchased’. Sorry.
      I have posted 2 other comments but they have as per usual been eaten.

  • avatar
    JD321

    What do you expect from corrupt MBA chimps?
    Perception is Reality…Riiiiight?

  • avatar
    Richard Chen

    I know it’s not a car brand, but how did Beats by Dr. Dre go from zero to everywhere (and $3 billion) in just 6 years? This is despite Monster Cables producing the first series of products and audiophiles panning their sound clarity & quality.

    The Beats brand is much bigger than the sum of its parts, and that’s what Cadillac needs to achieve. So, what do the B&B suggest?

    • 0 avatar
      petezeiss

      See “wigga”

      Or “Stockholm Syndrome”

    • 0 avatar
      awagliar

      That’s an interesting brand example, but hopefully one to which Cadillac does not aspire. Beats are popular because the self-professed cognoscenti deem it cool. It’s kinda like the Kardashian phenomenon .. famous for being famous, without any substance at all. To my ears, the Beats products I’ve tried (Mixr and Solo2) have been uninspired and flat, and I couldn’t shake the feeling that I was listening to music filtered through some very pricey cardboard.

      I’m probably older than the Beats target demographic, and younger than Cadillac’s; my opinion is worth exactly what you paid for it.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    Oh boy let’s see how many people you can poach from Burberry, Coach, H&M, and Godiva. That will resonate with the dealer body, especially the 78 year old franchise owner in OK who can remember when the Fleetwood that Murilee found was new.

  • avatar
    redav

    Here’s a different take:

    Cadillac wants to be a luxury brand, not just a luxury car brand. I’m okay with that direction. To accomplish that, they need people who aren’t merely car-guys. They need car-guys who are experienced & competent with luxury brands. Do they need non-car-guy luxury experts? No. But they need more than what the car-guy-only can deliver.

    The next questions are “How many car-guys are there that are experts on luxury?” and “How many of them can Cadillac hire?” I don’t know. The move to NY may help them somewhat. I see what they intend with NY being a bit ahead of other places, but their communications have been severely ham-fisted. That makes me less than confident in their current talent, and when you don’t have good talent, they often don’t recognize good talent in the hiring pool.

    • 0 avatar
      George B

      What product would command a higher price with the Cadillac brand except a GM car? The current brand cachet of “nicer than a Chevy” doesn’t translate that well to non-car products.

  • avatar
    Matt Foley

    If Chuck Berry wouldn’t write a song about it, then it’s not a real Cadillac.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    “That is fine but choosing not to hire proven car industry folks is just plain dumb.”

    They already have plenty of those, and that hasn’t done them much good.

  • avatar
    MGV001

    Yawn… I don’t see why everyone here is so worked up about Cadillac executives speaking the obvious truth. I mean, Cadillac has been nothing more than a luxury brand for at least 40 years, if not more. They came out of the closet. So now they want to sell perfume, pens, and clothing to Kmart shoppers. BIIIIG DEAL!
    Of course “petrolheads” are a nuissance at Cadillac. I mean, they don’t get it. They actually want Cadillac to go back to being a products company???? The outrage…

  • avatar
    alterboy21

    I am the ideal Cadillac demographic: in my earning years and frequent buyer of luxury cars. Earlier this year I purchased my first American car, something I thought I would never do. It was a Cadillac (CTS-V Wagon).

    I am a “petrol head”, but I did not purchase the car to track (I have another car for that). I purchased the car because (1) it makes a unique statement (wagon, V8, art & science styling) and (2) it is relatively comfortable/luxurious, (3) fun to drive, (4) reasonable running costs, and (5) brand; in that order. My wife, a definite non-petrol head, also loves the car and insists on driving it. If Cadillac can clean up their refinement a bit, they will have a customer for life.

    My issue with Cadillac (and other car brands driven by marketing, I am looking at you Infiniti) is that while brand is important, it actually takes a petrol head to get the product right, and without product brand does not matter. They are correct that it is not all about suspension settings and the most horsepower. But the petrol head understands that a V8 wagon is sexy, where high touch materials matter, or how a well communicating steering wheel feels. 99% of owners will not brake to the limit, but most can recognize positive brake pedal feel every time they drive the car. Brand cannot do any of that. The shame is that Cadillac was getting much better at making a good product and by now shifting to brand driven strategy, I fear their products will slip.

  • avatar

    Wait a moment, the prevailing wisdom is that Caddilac has better products than Lincoln with their tarted-up Fords. Why would Caddy’s managers look at Ford for inspiriation in hiring decisions?

  • avatar
    carguy

    I think what he means is that he already has enough car-guys on staff but what he now needs is folks who understand luxury brands. He did not say that he did not value car guys.

    He is also most likely right. Cadillac needs to start behaving like a luxury brand and that should start with ending the cash-on-hood discounts and adopting sane option packages (if you want HID headlights on an ATS you also have to buy the sports suspension).

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      All of those plans are viable options once the public has beaten a path to your door clamoring for what you’re selling. You’ve got to get them to the door first. Acting like a bunch of hipster Euro-snobs is not the approach I’d take

      • 0 avatar
        carguy

        I see where you’re coming from but they may have to endure slow sales if they want to play with the big boys. If you sell customers a $60K car and then you do a $10K discount promotion at the end of the year to eliminate stock then you have just devalued all of those cars by that amount. Luxury buyers care about resale value and they will not return. Others will be put off by the mere risk of losing big through depreciation leaving the brand with nothing but end of year discount shoppers.

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          Then they have to distance themselves from the rest of the GM pack. They can’t go forward with that “attitude” when people think their cars are tarted-up Buicks and Chevys. Bentley is a tarted-up VW Phaeton, but nobody really knows that. Well, Cadillac as got to present it’s products in such a way that nobody will suspect that they’re of a lessor DNA. I don’t think the people who brought you the Cimarron and more recently the ELR is capable of pulling it off

  • avatar
    George B

    I’m not sure what Ewe Ellinghaus meant by “petrolheads”, but I am sure that Cadillac brand managers aren’t going to meet many of their potential customers in Manhattan. In contrast, the new Toyota Headquarters in Plano will be a little over a mile from the Plano Lexus, Mercedes Benz, and BMW dealerships with a Ford and a Honda dealership across TX-121 in Frisco. Toyota will be able to observe car sales in an upscale suburb live using only a pair of binoculars if they choose. They will be able to meet actual customers at lunch in the nearby Shops at Legacy. First Saturday of every month they can stop by Cars and Coffee at Classic BMW.

  • avatar
    tekdemon

    I actually think Cadillac really does need a reboot that involves a lot of people who aren’t going to be your typical gearhead-people who are going to obsess about the kind of luxury details and cutting edge tech features that will impress people shopping for luxury car. The only problem is that I’m not convinced that this is the right crew to do it. For one thing, you don’t want to actually come out and SAY that you’re not all about gearheads and engineers-people might actually want cutting edge luxury and tech but buyers also want to feel like buying a Cadillac somehow makes them a real petrolhead of sorts by proxy. Like when people buy a Porsche but can barely drive the car, they’re partly buying that image.

    Cadillac’s new leadership honestly needs to just shut their mouths instead of spouting off in every other article. So far they’ve just made it sound like a cheesy and desperate brand, which is not helping. The faux-elitism where they’re proclaiming that they don’t care about sales is plain ridiculous when they’re simultaneously laying people off at the plant-layoffs don’t sound very luxurious GM.

    Cadillac honestly needs people who’ll take a look at the CTS and realize where they’re going wrong in comparison to something like the new C Class. What GM thinks is a “really great” interior looks like a joke when compared to the new C Class, and honestly why does the 3.6L V6 even exist for the CTS when the 2.0T is basically just as fast and gives the car better balance anyway? The argument to offer the V6 as a more refined option just makes it sound like the 2.0T isn’t sufficiently refined for a $50K luxury car (also, why the hell is the V6 a $8000 option? Are they smoking crack?). Also…why does the more compact and much lighter C300 have a 17 cubic foot trunk while the CTS manages with 13.7…though to be fair the ATS is actually the poster child for the trunk capacity being a complete afterthought-seriously…10 cubic feet GM?! That’s the kind of stuff that’s going to send people off to the other dealerships.

    But also, GM’s new leadership needs to stop drinking their own Kool-Aid with the pricing. Lexus got where it is today by simultaneously severely undercutting Mercedes while offering arguably better cars, and THEN they raised the price. Raising the price while your cars are already getting their butts kicked by the competition is a surefire way to ensure that your cars are doomed to fail-for one thing the luxury market is ruled by leasing and your ridiculous prices are going to make for murderously expensive leases.

  • avatar
    raph

    Didn’t Ron Zarella nearly destroy all of GM with a similar strategy?

    Hiring non “petrol heads” from the food industry and the like and making them brand managers.

    Damn I want a job where I can fail upwards so bad!

  • avatar
    racerxlilbro

    I would just like to point out the photo used at the top of the article is of Casa De Cadillac in Sherman Oaks, CA. It’s about six blocks from my house, and looks virtually the same today, except for the inventory. And the Buick/GMC agency next door.

  • avatar
    Master Baiter

    Can we start an over/under on how many more years this brand will survive?

    I say 10 years.

  • avatar
    psarhjinian

    A car guy isn’t necessarily a good thing. I’d posit that often isn’t, at all.

    “Bob Lutz is a car guy.”

    Didn’t help GM one bit and probably made it worse. Wasn’t so hot at Chrysler, either.

    “Soichiro Honda was a car guy.”

    I’ll grant you this one, but Honda has done as well or better under Takanobu Ito, who is sort of a car guy but doesn’t always act like one.

    “Lee Iaccoca was a car guy.”

    And Chrysler made the Aspen/Volare under his watch.

    “Ford Motor Company has a true car guy on the rise by the name of Henry Ford III.”

    And their most recent turn-around was when the car-guy turned it over to a manufacturing expert whose prior experience was airplanes.

    I would also point out: Fujio Cho and Kat Watanabe (during Toyota’s meteoric rise): Not car guys.

    • 0 avatar
      Richard Chen

      Iacocca didn’t get fired by HF II until 1978.

      But he did jump the shark in less than a decade, remember the Dodge Dynasty, Plymouth Acclaim, etc? and then thanks to a grudge, he couldn’t hand the reins to Lutz…

    • 0 avatar
      86er

      Read Lutz’s account of his early interactions with Vehicle Line Executives at GM and then tell me again that he “didn’t help GM one bit and probably made it worse”.

      This is terribly flip, even for you.

      • 0 avatar
        danio3834

        See the discussion on Lutz above. Anyone who makes assertions per below has a poor knowledge of what took place during those times or just plain doesn’t like Lutz and will lay out fallacies in an effort disparage him.

        “Didn’t help GM one bit and probably made it worse. Wasn’t so hot at Chrysler, either”

        Lutz worked a product renaissance at Chrysler in the 1990s that made it extremely profitable. He also had a hand in the massively improved product onslaught at GM in the late 2000s.

      • 0 avatar
        psarhjinian

        Lutz needed to get GM moving a breadth of product, and not just in one or two lines.

        He showed a marked disinterest in making commodity product, or rather, good, solid, reliable and competitive commodity products. Going into bankruptcy, his halo products were still flash-over-substance, with a distinct disinterest in bread-and-butter.

        Possibly he couldn’t move the needle at GM–I could grant you that–but that’s also his failing as a leader.

        I’m sorry, but the results of his tenure really didn’t speak well.

        The best product he managed was the 2008 Malibu, which was really a couple years too late. Nearly everything else was sizzle, and the PR blunders didn’t encourage matters

        • 0 avatar
          86er

          He has many many flaws, of that there is no doubt, but I think he helped bring about a culture shift in GM that, with mixed results, got their priorities straight(ened) in terms of building much betters cars and trucks, instead of meeting internal targets that the market didn’t care about. Again, read that passage about the VLEs. Mind-boggling doesn’t begin to describe…

          Expecting anyone to move mountains and perform miracles at GM is asking for more than is humanly possible.

          For the record, the best product of his tenure was the 2007 Silverado and Sierra. For example, compare the fit and finish and interior materials vs. the GMT800. We can go back and forth all day about priorities there too, but remember the 2004 F-150 was a harbinger of change in the market.

          Do cars like the Malibu really bring home the bacon nowadays? Or even in 2008? At any rate, GM is much more dedicated to having competitive products in all segments, which is certainly more than you can say was the case in 2001.

  • avatar
    Lightspeed

    So they want to recreate Infiniti’s rocks-and-trees campaign? It took Infiniti 20-years to recover from that. Didn’t take long for these guys to forget the orginal hole they dug themselves out of. At least be honest(if not craven) enough to say, “we’re chasing the over-extended d-bag, who will break us on false warranty-claims market.”

  • avatar
    3Deuce27

    Reg; “If so, Cadillac’s future is as bleak as the B&B thinks it is, and not just because of products.”

    Gobshite! That comment is just as arrogant, nonsensical, and misinformed, as a good deal of the so called B&B. Spare us the paper anus comments.

  • avatar
    Slow_Joe_Crow

    This sounds way too much like Rick Wagoner’s brand management schtick all over again. You remember the bit about recruiting people from Proctor & Gamble who were experts at selling toothpaste and expecting them to be equally expert at selling cars. The end result was bankruptcy.

  • avatar
    TW5

    In my view, NYC only works if they are playing the Gotham card. Art and Science does remind me of 1930s neo-Gothic and art-deco architecture, like the Empire State Building or the Chrysler Building (hah), but why do you need European luxury good marketers to play the Gotham strategy? European luxury advertisers have only ever demonstrated a proclivity to over-sex everything and then add so much vanity that the dirty old plutocrats can’t help but pop a Viagra and go on a shopping spree.

    Right now they should be building a new Batmobile and fleet of Bruce Wayne cars, and then hoping that Ben Affleck isn’t a complete disaster. But really, any of us could probably tell a more compelling story about the move to NYC than jaded old executives who pander to shareholders.

  • avatar
    DrSandman

    I am an affluent 40-something, jazz-lover, married with 2 kids, & a good job. I am Caddy’s target demographic. If they want to win me over a BMW 3-series or a Volvo Polestar, they must offer me a naturally aspirated V8 with STYLE, baby. I think the esteemible Jack Baruth wrote something similar a few years ago.

    No RWD V8, no sale. I don’t care what model it is… Caddy should be all V8, all the time.

    That’s the American way.

  • avatar
    JaySeis

    Given that all cars save exotics are essentially becoming “luxurious”, iconic brand separation/identification may be the sole remaining way to attract buyers attention. But depreciation plays havoc with brand/image exclusivity as most any poser can buy the [insert luxury brand] image used. Ah, the fleeting vanity.

  • avatar
    Victor

    Meanwhile, in the rest of the world, Cadillac has less brand cachet than Hyundai. Or even Kia.

    This twisted idea of making a global luxury brand out of Cadillac is plain stupid. That’s General Motors arrogance right there – now empowered by a guy whose greatest achievement in his entire carreer was ruining Infiniti naming convention.

    Every time I see a new Cadillac I light a candle to the XLR, the SL-buster that wasn’t the Allanté reloaded, until it was precisely that.

  • avatar
    Calico Jack

    My grandfather was a Cadillac man all the way. Growing up in the 1920s and 1930s left him with a soul-deep identification of Cadillac as the real deal of luxury, well and truly the standard of the world. Driving a Chevy was fine for work, and moving up to a Buick during the ’60s was a fondly remembered sign of how his career was prospering and his growing family had a happy suburban lifestyle. A while after he retired, he sold off the Oldsmobile he had been driving and picked up a brand-new 2001 Cadillac DeVille, deep burgundy paint glistening, rolling over bumps with a ride so smooth it had to be experienced to be believed.

    Most people here will instantly start making “last of the great American land yachts” cracks when they here the name DeVille. Fair enough, I’m an import guy, I may have made a few myself. But nothing could penetrate my Grandpa’s pleasure in the car, which he drove until his recent death. It was the ultimate giant, cushy symbol of American success to him every time he saw the Cadillac emblem on the hood, and he owned it.

    I’m glad, really, that he never saw all of this. The image of Cadillac he treasured for very nearly a century was forever untainted by worry over the brand’s direction and stupid people seemingly determined to slam the brand face-first into a brick wall.

    Speaking personally, as someone who never liked Cadillac anyway…oh my f***ing God, Mercedes is gonna kick your asses so hard, it’ll be like the roadrunner pushing Wile E. Coyote off a cliff and then dropping an anvil after him for good measure. How ya gonna make Cadillac a “luxury brand” when the cars are second-rate flops? Extra-thick and fluffy polo shirts? Cadillac pens with ultra-wet ink? Super-potent Cadillac perfume? Do I even want to know?

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      Jack, what you wrote is something that literally cannot overstated.

      Cadillac used to and still should =

      1) Bold
      2) Spacious
      3) PLUSH RIDING

      Cadillac has eliminated 2 & 3 above, and many would contend they’re not doing well even as to count 1.

      But a PLUSH RIDE IS CADILLAC’S RAISON DE ETRE NOW AND FOREVER.

      My father had an early 90s Deville, and despite the damage Roger Smith had wrought, it had large, spacious seats fore and aft, thus like a self closing trunk lid mechanism (that actually worked reliably), and most importantly – a PLUSH, VELVETY RIDE OVER EVEN BROKEN PAVEMENT.

      The last thing used to be the soul of Cadillac, now lost.

      As I wrote in a prior Cadillac article, about my own experience with Cadillac as a young boy:

      “I remember fondly the warm embrace of our 1985 Fleetwood Brougham D’Elegance on cold Michigan mornings, cosseting me as we strode on a pillow of fluff over frost heaved roads on my trek, as a young passenger, to school.

      That ride was a velvet carpet. Heaven.”

      SO, what, exactly, is a Cadillac today? What’s a Cadillac?

    • 0 avatar
      petezeiss

      “Super-potent Cadillac perfume?”

      Hey, we got a lotta bottles of “Doe Estrus” left up Nort’ here, don’tcha know.

      • 0 avatar
        Calico Jack

        Send them in to Cadillac immediately! Odds are they’d think “Cadillac Doe Estrus” has a luxurious, exotic sound to it. And it’d probably be better than whatever they come up with if left to their own devices.

    • 0 avatar
      Vulpine

      I may be wrong but I think this new head wants to return Cadillac to those true luxury days; at least, I hope he does. I do agree that, “Extra-thick and fluffy polo shirts? Cadillac pens with ultra-wet ink? Super-potent Cadillac perfume?” is an outlandish idea across the board and certainly not one that’s going to help their image. The only thing that’s going to help Cadillac is to eliminate all these gimmicks and aspirations of sportiness and go back to being the American King of Luxury Cars. You can still build nice, big, comfortable cars without them weighing three tons powered by a gigantic engine. Today’s V6 puts out as much horsepower as the big-block V8 did back in the ’60s–especially if it’s turbocharged.

      The Cadillac could again be a brand that executives aspire to as a sign of financial success instead of the Mercedes S Class, especially when you realize that Mercedes is still the “Chevrolet” of Germany and is really no big deal in its home country.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      “Most people here will instantly start making “last of the great American land yachts””

      Nope, certainly not for an 01 DeVille. Those comments are reserved for 92-96 Fleetwoods. There wasn’t much great about that DeVille.

  • avatar
    Fred

    Co-worker who I guess can be considered a millennial has a CTS coupe manual. He likes it but it’s now in the shop because the transmission fell out, well almost, being fixed under warranty. He doesn’t think he will get another, especially if it keeps breaking. Which to me proves that no matter the branding it’s still the product.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    If the Hyundai Genesis (particularly the R-Spec and the new all-wheel drive models) and the Equus had never been built by Hyundai but instead were built in North America, presented by GM and given the Cadillac badge, how would both they and the Cadillac brand fare against European competition?

  • avatar

    Fall of Cadillac symbolizes the fall of American way. After WWII Europe and Asia were trying hard to adapt American way – American style democracy which emphasized personal freedom over dictate of the Government bureaucrats, rock’n’roll, financial system, American style. Made in USA meant something and American manufacturing was an envy of the world. Now US become service economy, most iconic American brands are bankrupt or owned by Asians or become sad joke like Levi Strauss or Lincoln for that matter, Americans now trying hard to become like sophisticated and better educated Europeans and Asians. Bitter political fight between parties and people like in Europe, adopting Marxist ideology, moving away from personal freedoms towards socialism and strong repressive Government.

  • avatar
    CarnotCycle

    I would figure out what Caddy’s brand identity is (seems in flux), then build cars that advertise said identity on the road instead of other way around. Premium cars are not rational purchases, they are industrial fashion.

    And if I were designing Caddy’s brand identity, hence motif for the cars, I think technically unapologetic, overtly decadent, and ambiguously sinister. Think V12 version of an LS7 in a jet-black five thousand pound-plus sedan made out of steel where the crumple zone is the Prius it just hit.

    That’s a Caddy. That’s ‘brand identity.’

  • avatar
    Johnster

    I rather like the current Cadillac lineup. They’re all a bit off, but not bad. They all seem to need a better CUE infotainment systems and better 4-cylinder engines. The line really does need a flagship and the upcoming CT6 sounds promising, even if it has a stupid name.

    However, the latest news from Cadillac sounds disturbingly similar to the last days of Oldsmobile, where they hired a bunch of market geniuses from Procter and Gamble.

    Although the marketing team could be called successful in that the average Oldsmobile buyer became the kind of upper-middle class consumer they sought, they lost the admittedly shrinking number of brand-loyal buyers, and there just were not enough of the new demographic they sought to make up the difference.

    Let’s hope history doesn’t repeat itself.

    • 0 avatar
      Vulpine

      Oldsmobile was dying long before they brought the P&G marketers in simply because they had stopped making cars their user base wanted. They went from making practical cars like the Omega hatchback and personal luxury cars like the Cutlass Supreme and the comfortable cars like the Delta 88 and 98 Regency to making ugly little econoboxes with the same names. When they realized they had killed off their most popular models, they tried to re-image Oldsmobile with unrelated models like the Alero and “modernized” the logo to where it looked like a cross between Infinity and Lexus logos. After that, there was no saving the brand.

      Cadillac is taking the same path, albeit only slightly more slowly. They spent who knows how many hundreds of thousands of dollars to re-style the Cadillac badge itself by what? Removing the garland from around it. They spent how many hundreds of millions of dollars building what? A Cadillac Corvette. Currently every one of their models has lost its luxury image to emphasize performance and handling–something that has never fit Cadillac’s image in roughly a century on the roads. Is this intelligent?

      If this guy doesn’t try to turn Caddy’s direction around and put it back in the luxury market where it belongs, Caddy will die just as Oldsmobile died.

      • 0 avatar

        one of the best posts I have read here in years. thanks!

      • 0 avatar
        Lie2me

        It’s funny I just read an article yesterday that said Cadillac will be doing the exact opposite. Now get this, Cadillac has banned the word “luxury” from all of it’s promotions and advertising. That’s right, they won’t even use “that word” in association with anything Cadillac. Sounds too “old fashioned”

        Shall we start the death watch?

        Good post, Vulpine

      • 0 avatar

        anyone remember the Mid West restaurant chain Bill Knapp’s who also had outlets in Florida? they hired an outsider who proceeded to change the menu and alter the decor. the alienated a loyal customer base and ended up in bankruptcy. I miss their chicken noodle soup and chocolate cake.

  • avatar
    jimbob457

    Caddy has already made its market niche – luxury based on 20th century engineering for 10 or 15 grand less than the Germans. It actually may make more sense to try to peddle this package in the Big Apple than anywhere else. They sure won’t get very far with the gearheads.

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