De Nysschen: Cadillac ATS & CTS "Will Disappear", XTS "Will Not Be Replaced", Cadillac Will Exit Livery Market
In just a few years these nameplates will disappear from Cadillac showrooms
It got a little buried in the rush of news out of the New York Auto Show, but GMInsideNews reports that at the private introduction of the Cadillac CT6 last week, the night before the NYIAS media preview, Cadillac head Johan de Nysschen confirmed that the existence of the CT6 flagship will make the current XTS large sedan superfluous. That seems to have been a foregone conclusion, but somewhat surprisingly de Nysschen also said that when the time comes to replace the CTS and ATS models, not only will those nameplates die as the brand moves to the CTx nomenclature, the new cars won’t be direct replacements. De Nysschen also announced that with the exit of the XTS, Cadillac will be leaving the livery business.
It’s rumored that both of the smaller sedans will be somewhat downsized, positioning what will presumably be called the CT2 against the compact Mercedes-Benz CLA while the CTS’ replacement, the CT4, will move slightly downmarket to give more room for the CT6, while leaving space above that car for something range topping should Cadillac truly dare greatly and build something like the Elmiraj or Ciel concepts.
Concerning Cadillac’s bread and butter sedans, GMInsideNews quotes de Nysschen as saying, “As we move into the future refining our sedan portfolio, there will be no direct successor to the CTS. There will be no direct successor to the ATS. There is no point to renaming those cars because in the future those cars will disappear.”
Also disappearing from Cadillac’s lineup will be the XTS. Based on a platform that compromised both proportions and interior space, many saw the XTS as a stopgap product to give the brand something upmarket from the CTS. Assuming a normal product lifecycle, the XTS would likely have been replaced for the 2019 model year, but de Nysschen said that’s not going to happen. “Ultimately, a car like XTS when it reaches the end of its lifecycle, will not be replaced.”
Since the XTS is the only car in Cadillac’s current lineup that has the size and construction suitable for coachbuilders to convert to hearse and limousine use, when it goes out of production, Cadillac will likely stop serving that market.
I’ve written about how automakers supply the livery business and it’s not just a matter of making a car that’s the right size and shape. Both GM and Ford have certification processes to make sure that the conversion companies that they supply are capable of maintaining the structural integrity of their finished products and I have to presume that making sure the car’s architecture is up to the task is part of the process as well. My guess is that the new CT6’s architecture, which combines aluminum and high strength steel, cannot be cut up and stretched the way the XTS’ steel unibody can be modified. “We will not have a car that will lend itself to these kind of modifications and we will probably withdrawal from those markets,” de Nysschen told GMInsideNews.
Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can get a parallax view at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS
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Damn, American car companies have trouble committing to the same brand strategy for 4 minutes. How is this supposed to help them carve their own niche from the German? Silly.