Cadillac Is Holding Out for a Halo

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
cadillac is holding out for a halo

Visually arresting, technologically complex, ultra luxurious, and undeniably trendsetting, halo cars sprinkle lustre all over a brand and ensure viewers of hip-hop videos know the artist is absolutely loaded with cash.

Cadillac’s not there yet. Give it time, says the brand’s president — a halo Cadillac model will indeed appear, just not until well into the coming decade. There’s a few things to take care of first.

Shoring up domestic sales through a streamlined sedan portfolio and diversified utility vehicle stable is top of mind for Johan de Nysschen. Speaking to Automotive News at the New York International Auto Show, the Cadillac boss said housekeeping takes precedence over glitzy, high-zoot playthings.

Between now an 2021, Cadillac plans to market the XT4 small crossover (which debuted late Tuesday in New York), a larger crossover, and a next-generation Escalade. On the sedan front, the XTS, CTS, and ATS will disappear, with two new models appearing below the XT6. With these holes filled, Cadillac can then reach for the sky.

The timeline for these introductions runs through the end of 2021, so any halo wouldn’t appear until 2022 at the absolute earliest, assuming Caddy sticks to the plan. By the middle of the coming decade, the brand — already big in China — wants to make inroads into Europe. It’s unlikely such a range-topping vehicle would be a sedan.

“I do not think that the world needs yet another large, three-box conventional sedan,” de Nysschen said. “We are going to produce a halo vehicle for Cadillac. When it comes, it will stun the world.”

If Cadillac’s going after tony continental types, an electric powertrain is a must, even if it’s just one of many variants. de Nysschen himself alluded to it when he claimed Cadillac would receive a “disproportionate share” of the electrified models coming to General Motors over the next five years. It makes sense to field the technology on a pricey vehicle, he said, adding that it will help elevate the brand.

Unlike other automakers, Cadillac isn’t afraid to heap some love on ICEs. Six- and eight-cylinder powerplants will remain in the lineup for the foreseeable future, de Nysschen said.

All of this halo and product talk has us wondering how the recent report of the late 2021 production of a car bearing the Escala nam e fits into Cadillac’s plan. From the sounds of it, the Escala could appear as just about anything — electric sport crossover, reborn XLR, conventional sedan, maybe even a glamorous coupe. Is the Escala the halo? Not in its concept form, that’s for sure. It makes sense, though, to use the name of a high-profile concept car for a production halo car.

[Images: Cadillac]

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  • Ultraviolet Thunder Ultraviolet Thunder on Apr 02, 2018

    Cadihack has had over a decade to get its act in gear after the so-called Renaissance that brought in the ear of pre-dented sheet metal and cheap interiors and 1980's movie theatre aisle lighting accents on the front end. No longer can this company be given an ounce of latitude. Aside from the V-Series, they build junk. There is no luxury to these products and the once laughable Lincoln is now producing superior products to Cadihack and are making a mockery of Cadihack SUV's in the process. Cadihack needs fewer models - it needs to learn how to build a luxurious product, and please stop thinking you can build a superior product to Europeans. Go back to building American luxury and understand that you are fooling yourself into thinking anyone cars about rear wheel drive anymore. Even with the infection of all these name plates they now offer, they still have not beaten Cadillac from 1990. And that proves this is all a joke.

  • Jagboi Jagboi on Apr 03, 2018

    If they want to go after the European market do they have a good diesel? Last time I was in London, every single S Class and Range Rover I saw (and there are a lot of them in Central London) was diesel. Jaguar has said that 95% of their European sales are diesel. If Cadillac doesn't have a diesel than can compete with Mercedes they shouldn't bother.

  • Ehaase 1980-1982 Cougar XR-7 shared its wheelbase and body with the Thunderbird. I think the Cougar name was used for the 1977 and 1981 sedans, regular coupe and wagons (1977 and 1982 only) in an effort to replicate Oldsmobile's success using the Cutlass name on all its intermediates, although I wonder why Ford bothered, as the Granada/Cougar were replaced by the Fox LTD/Marquis in 1983.
  • Ken Accomando The Mark VIII was actually designed before the aero Bird, but FMC was nervous about the huge change in design, so it followed the Thunderbird a year. Remember, at this time, the 1983 Thunderbird was the first new aero Ford, with the Tempo soon following. It seems so obvious now but Ford was concerned if their buyers would accept the new aero look! To get the Lincoln buyers warmed up, they also debuted for the 1982 auto show season the Lincoln Concept 90…which really previewed the new Mark VII. Also, the new 1983 Thunderbird and Cougar debuted a little late, in Nov 1982, so perhaps that’s why they were left out of the full line brochures.
  • Tassos This is yesterday;s news, or even the day before. I reported it here yesterday, and commented on it. Do wake up.
  • 2ACL As far as manufacturers with US operations go? Current Focus or Fiesta. Honda e.As for those with no US operations, I've been intrigued by the Peugeot 508 Sport Engineered and Vauxhall Corsa Electric.
  • Tassos SNAAB shot itself in the foot when it BASTARDIZED its unique brand by BADGE ENGINEERING its vehicles with GOD DAMNED GM, OPEL, CHEVY, LANCIA and who knows what other automotive RIFF RAFF. I know of no Saab Enthusiast (they do exist) who felt sorry when the stupid maker went BANKRUPT.