24/7 Wall St. Declares 'Book by Cadillac' a Failure; Cadillac Shrugs Off Questions

Mark Stevenson
by Mark Stevenson
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General Motors’ luxury division isn’t content with brewing coffee and showing off fashionable new threads at its new SoHo space — it also wants you to drive its cars.

Book by Cadillac, a monthly subscription lease service that launched one month ago, aims to get more people in the metal to the tune of $1,500 a month — and 24/7 Wall St. is already calling it a “major flop.”

According to the self-described “financial news and opinion” website, “[Uwe] Ellinghaus [Cadillac’s chief marketing officer] in particular has to be humiliated,” as there aren’t enough subscriptions available to supply the demand.

Say what now?

24/7 Wall St.’s argument centers on Book’s supposedly discerning clientele and the service’s current waitlist.

Consumers with enough cash in hand to spend $1,500 a month on a luxury vehicle subscription service, the site argues, want what Cadillac is offering — but they want it now, and they don’t want to be placed on a waitlist.

It is worth reminding Cadillac that luxury car owners do want “white glove” service, and not a misstep that will put many people off enough that some may never become customers.

However, 24/7 Wall St.’s opinion writer seemingly ignores a generally accepted belief of success: if demand outstrips supply for a particular product or service, it’s considered a success and not a “major flop.”

Still, we reached out to Cadillac to find out what factors currently limit available subscriptions, how many people are on the waitlist, and what the automaker is doing to make more subscriptions available.

Cadillac responded with a nearly audible shrug.

Cadillac spokesperson David Caldwell said there’s “not much more to be said now” regarding Book, but “aspects surely will evolve” and the program “will be confirmed or adjusted based on learnings from the implementation” as “the team focuses on the new project and new customers.”

So much for clarity.

Book is only available in New York City as of today, and the program’s logistics — the delivery of vehicles, etc. — are handled by local Cadillac dealers. Cadillac has not announced a timeline for Book’s expansion to other markets.

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3 of 22 comments
  • Speedlaw Speedlaw on Feb 05, 2017

    There's a W2 mentality at work here. The customer at this price point writes off the car or charges it to a business. The costs of the car are thus hidden or moved to another entity. I see a bunch of W2 folks looking at the costs of ownership in NYC, not realizing the way the car is actually costed out. Yes, $900 per month garage, $2500 per year insurance, etc, adds up fast, but that car is also registered outside NYC-relative or vacation home, so those aren't real numbers for many either.

  • Bollocks666 Bollocks666 on Feb 06, 2017

    So much untrue in this article, for starters Cadillac dealers have nothing to do with this. Zero. Cadillac hired a high end fleet management firm to handle it. Clients will never have to deal with a "dealer" Cars are delivered to their doors. And when supply exceeds demand how is that a failure? Just stating few facts.

  • Syke Congratulations on not mentioning the political possibility. I'm sure that during the reading of the article, I'm not the only one noticing the states primarily listed are primarily considered conservative states. And they're not all states bordering Canada.
  • Redapple2 I want my 5 minutes bck
  • Paul Alexander I'd love to buy a car without infotainment.
  • EBFlex Chrysler has the best infotainment by far. The older uConnect system was bulletproof and never had issues. The newer one based on android auto is a big step backward but it's still very good. Nothing else comes close to Chrysler's infotainment.
  • EBFlex People don't want compromises. They want a vehicle that will match what they have now with ICE which includes very short refueling times, long range, and batteries that don't degrade over a rather short time. In the midwest, people don't live on top of each other. People like their space and are spread out. 30+ mile commutes are common. So is outdoor living which includes towing.Government cars make sense for the coasts where people love to live on top of each other and everything is within walking distance. They don't make sense in areas where it's cold and 40% of your range could be lost. Government cars are just not viable right now for the majority of people and the sales reflect it.