Forget About the Flops: Cadillac's Job Is to Make GM Greener

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems

Remember the Cadillac ELR? Your author saw a single, solitary unit in the wild once, and there’s a good chance a journalist was behind the wheel. Not long for this world, the plug-in hybrid Caddy coupe gave way to the stately (but equally low-volume) CT6 Plug-in, whose death was revealed shortly before that of the sedan itself.

Not to be deterred from its goal of advancing electrification, or at least competing against glitzy foreign rivals, General Motors has announced the brand will once again pick up the green torch.

During a Friday media briefing for its 2019 earnings forecast, GM copped to Cadillac’s new role within the company. While not unexpected — former Cadillac president Johan de Nysschen hinted as much a year ago — the statement by newly minted GM president Mark Reuss at least provided some context for the automaker’s powertrain future.

There’s a new, dedicated electric vehicle architecture on the way, and a Cadillac will be the first vehicle built on that platform, dubbed BEV3. The company’s BEV2 platform underpins the Chevrolet Bolt.

“Cadillac will lead that and drive that globally,” Reuss said, without providing details as to the type of vehicle, or vehicles, consumers can expect.

Late Thursday, Reuters published a report stating exactly this, based on the word of two sources. Neither source was able to elaborate on whether the first Caddy EV would appear in sedan, coupe, or utility vehicle form. Given that Mercedes-Benz, Audi, and BMW have compact — and quite conventional — compact EV crossovers about to hit the market, it’s a solid assumption that Cadillac’s first EV offering will emerge in this form. Tesla’s Model Y crossover should appear before too long, too.

Still, past statements by GM CEO Mary Barra suggest there’s still hope for those those holding out for a clean, green, super sedan. While describing the company’s product future (GM’s aiming for 20 new EVs by 2023, spanning many divisions and markets), Barra said the range will run the gamut from crossovers, minivans, and SUVs to sports cars and sedans. One wonders whether the company’s recent decision to kill off numerous conventionally powered sedans indicates an EV sedan might be off the table.

Truly, electric motoring would be so much more exciting if it came wrapped in the body of Cadillac’s Elmiraj, Ciel, or Escala concept cars. Speaking of concepts, a report last year claimed the Escala name will appear on a vehicle bound for a late-2021 production date at GM’s Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant. GM’s BEV3 platform comes online in 2021.

Interesting.

[Source: Automotive News] [Image: General Motors]

Steph Willems
Steph Willems

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  • Jeff S Jeff S on Jan 12, 2019

    No GM should not kill Cadillac or Buick. A Carl Icahn needs to buy up shares of GM and start selling Cadillac and Buick off. These brands are dead to most Americans but still have value to the Chinese. The next step is to get rid of Barra and the board with a golden parachute and clean house. Hire someone from the outside who has experience in the car industry and that actually likes cars but is savvy when it comes to finances. Next step put some more resources in Chevrolet and actually make good trucks, crossovers, and suvs. Fire those who designed the new Silverado and get a design team that can actually make an appealing Silverado. Also take the new Blazer and rename it. Using the Blazer name on such an inferior product just ruins Chevrolet's legacy. I understand the need for such a vehicle but if at some later date GM wants to release a Jeep Wrangler competitor at least give it a name it deserves. The old GM still exists waiting for another Government bailout which most taxpayers don't have the stomach for. GM has a chance to become a great corporation with great products but corrective action needs to happen now. Take a giant broom and sweep away all those who have made this mess.

  • Ceipower Ceipower on Jan 12, 2019

    Forget about the flops? Good luck with that plan!

  • CAMeyer Considering how many voters will be voting for Trump because they remember that gas prices were low in 2020–never mind the pandemic—this seems like a wise move.
  • The Oracle Been out on the boat on Lake James (NC) and cooking up some hella good food here with friends at the lake place.
  • ToolGuy Also on to-do list: Read the latest Steve S. fiction work on TTAC (May 20 Junkyard Find)
  • 1995 SC I'm likely in the minority, but I really liked the last Eldorado best. That and the STS.
  • Dartdude Typical Joe, bribing people for votes. He will do anything to re-elected, but as soon as he is he will go back on everything he says and does. America has never been this venerable as it is today. NO country respect Joe and what he says.
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